National Alumni Events 2017

We are hitting the road this year to celebrate 68 years with VVS Alumni!  Head of School, Paul Amadio, and Alumni Engagement Coordinator, Jenae McCarroll, are co-hosting lively events across the country, with class agents and VVS ambassadors. Check out the events coming to your area and save the date in your calendar, today. Make sure to contact us to let us know you are coming, or if you would like to help do outreach or host an event. Hope to see you all very soon! Continue Reading…

VVS Gathering in Los Angeles

When: Thursday, October 6th. 6-9pm
Where: 168 N.Fuller Ave. LA, CA 90036

Please join Deryn Warren (founding family /class of ’62) and Head of School, Paul Amadio, for a jovial and informational VVS gathering. We will enjoy a light dinner and string quartet with a short presentation and the opportunity to share your VVS memories, on film, for our Story Telling Series! To register or inquire further, call or email Alumni Engagement Coordinator Jenae McCarroll, at 928-284-2272 ext.32 or

This event is open to alumni students and families, prospective students and families and the broader VVS community, upon registration.

Old Hill Ranch Vineyard Grapevine

VVS Alumni Gathering in Sonoma, CA

When: Sunday, October 9th 2016. 12-3pm

Where: 8 Old Hill Ranch Rd. Glen Ellen, CA 95442

Please join Will Bucklin (Trustee / class of ’80) and Head of School, Paul Amadio, for our annual North Coast VVS Alumni Gathering at Old Hill Ranch Vineyard on Sunday October 9th from 12-3pm. We will be serving home-made, artisanal pizza for lunch paired with wines from the Bucklin’s family ranch. Paul Amadio will give an update on all things VVS and all participants will be invited to share memories for our inaugural Alumni Storytelling Series. Located in the heart of Sonoma Valley, this gorgeous venue is located 50 minutes north of the Golden Gate Bridge. Please RSVP to for registration and further directions.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Old Hill Ranch Vineyard, Sonoma County

Commencement Weekend 2016

It’s hard to believe that Commencement Weekend 2016 is right around the corner. The Class of 2016 will be awarded their diplomas the morning of Saturday, May 28 on the VVS quad at 9:30 am. The weekend is filled with celebrations to honor the class.

Festivities begin on Friday with an afternoon reception from 3:30 to 5:00 for seniors and their parents and hosted by Head of School Paul Amadio. An all-school bbq on the quad follows at 5:30 with dessert in Brady Hall after. We cap the night with our annual Baccalaureate Night, a celebration of our top scholars, athletes, artists and activists at 6:30 in Brady Hall. A visual arts show will be up for viewing in Avery Gallery.

Saturday morning we will offer breakfast in the dining hall from 7:00 am until 9:00 am. The Class of 2016 will begin their procession to the quad at 9:30 am. Lunch is served after the ceremony at 11:30 am.

The Class of 2016 is Verde Valley School’s sixty-sixth graduating class.

Click here to register for Commencement Weekend.


As we continue to celebrate our alumni and their accomplishments, today, International Women’s Day, seems fitting that we honor Betsy Brown Braun, Class of ’66. 

Betsy Brown Braun, best selling author of Just Tell Me What to Say: Sensible Tips and Scripts for Perplexed Parents (HarperCollins) and You’re Not The Boss Of Me: Bratproofing Your Four To Twelve Year Old(HarperCollins), is a child development and behavior specialist, parent educator, multiple birth parenting consultant, and founder of Parenting Pathways®, Inc.

Continue Reading…

Nancy Green Print Workshop

Nancy Green, ’69, visited VVS last week to resurrect the old printing press and give students in visual arts classes a workshop on the press.  

Nancy, a notable artist and classmate of ceramics and photography teacher Jeff Perkins finalized the idea of getting the printing press going again and teaching a new generation of VVS students to use it this past summer when Jeff and his wife Crissy visited Nancy and her husband Jerome West, ’66 at their home.  Jerome joins the Anasazi field trip each November, walking our students up into canyons and showing them amazing rock art.

Nancy has contributed her artistry to VVS many times in the past, most recently by offering a printmaking project period.  In addition to donating her time to students, Nancy also donated the materials used in the workshop and to working on the press.

Nancy and Jerome live in Torrey, Utah where she paints abstract landscapes inspired by Capitol Reef country.


You can learn more about Nancy and her art at


A Letter from our Board President

January 26, 2016

Newly appointed Board of Trustees President Tamara Nydell Cook, ’83

It is with heartfelt honor and humility that I assume the role of President of the Verde Valley School Board of Trustees. The exceptionally hard work and dedication of time, talent, treasure and leadership given to this Board and the School by my predecessor, Amie Rodnick, has kept us on the path to steady progress and strategic growth. Thank you, Amie!

Our Board of Trustees, like our Head of School, students, faculty, staff, and alumni, strive to embrace and promote the global mission of this small corner of paradise – Academic Excellence, World Citizenship, Environmental Stewardship, Physical Labor and Service to Others. Some have artfully coined this “IB + Dirt.” Others say it’s all about “the Rock.” Whatever the jingle, I dare say VVS has succeeded even through the most challenging of times. Many lives have been touched by this place and many more will be touched in the years to come. As the new year gets underway, so, too, do our strategic plans for continued growth and development. But we cannot do this alone.

Join us! Beginning February 2016, we are introducing THE BOARD’S CORNER – our way of reaching out to you with news and information, updates and commentary. Get connected. Stay connected. Be informed. Get involved. Learn more. Spread the word. Recruit. Donate. Engage. Participate.

Tamara Nydell Cook (Class of 1983)
President of the Board of Trustees
Verde Valley School

BOT On Campus

The Verde Valley School Board of Trustees will meet for their bi-annual on-campus meeting (monthly meetings are telephonic) this Thursday and Friday.

In addition to their meetings, BOT members will spend time with students, faculty and staff while on campus. Board members will visit classes on Thursday and host a faculty reception on Thursday afternoon. On Friday, BOT members will have lunch in the dining gall with students.

Friday’s meetings are open session and the public is invited to attend. Open Session runs form 9:00 am – 4:00 pm and will be held at the Head of School’s house on campus. The agenda includes:

9:00 – 9:15 Election of Officers

9:15-11:30 Mission Update from the Head of School

1:15-3:00 Strategic Planning Presentation and Discussion

3:00 – 3:30 Committee Goal Setting from Strategic Planning

Ms. Schucker

Christie McIntyre Schucker, ’82, Alumni Update

In December 2015, Christie McIntyre Schucker, ’82, received her Master of Science degree in Biology from Eastern Washington University. For her thesis, Stream Microbial Communities along an Agricultural Gradient, she assessed the microbial ecology of an agriculturally impacted watershed that resides within one of the most endangered ecosystems in our country, the Palouse Prairie. She is currently seeking publication of her research in Applied and Environmental Microbiology. Continue Reading…

Hopi Harvest

Saturday eight VVS students and three teachers left Family Weekend a bit early to assist with the Fall Hopi corn harvest.  In a tangible example of VVS diversity, each of the eight students hailed from a different nation – the Yavapai-Apache Nation, Rwanda, Vietnam, China, Germany, Mexico, Spain and Nigeria. They came together to work with VVS Anthropology teacher Leigh Carter and her friend Michael Kotutwa Johnson to shuck thousands of ears of blue, red, white and yellow corn that Michael had harvested the day before. The corn will be used for different foods and ceremonies.  Michael also taught the students the art of making parched corn.

You can see photos from the weekend at