President – Amanda Campbell
Amanda is excited to serve as SEPTA President for the 2022-2023 school year! Amanda is a graduate of Penn State University, where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Music Education (K-12). After graduation, Amanda taught K-5 music in Pennsylvania and Virginia. Amanda has also worked in the non-profit arts administration world – first interning with the National Symphony Orchestra Education Department, then working for an opera company in administration, marketing, education outreach, and performing. Amanda is a charter member of the Fairfax County Special Education PTA and has previously served as Communications Chair and Vice President. Amanda is committed to advocacy that supports all students’ access to quality education.
Access to appropriate communication supports and advocacy for the presumption of competence for non-speaking/minimally-speaking students has been a focus of Amanda’s personal advocacy efforts since her family’s experiences in ChildFind preschool. Born and raised in Western New York, Amanda is also an avid fan of the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres – and, of course, chicken wings. When she’s not singing or working with SEPTA, you’re most likely to find Amanda planning the next family Disney adventure. There’s no better place to “leave today and enter the world of yesterday, tomorrow and fantasy!”
Vice President – Lauren McCaughey
Lauren grew up in the Deep South (Louisiana and Mississippi) and has lived in the DC area periodically since graduating from the George Washington University. She has previously served on SEPTA’s mini-grants committee and has served in other roles at her children’s elementary school PTA. She has three children in FCPS (one in elementary, one in middle school, and one in high school). She works for the U.S. government and has served in Togo, the Republic of Georgia, and Uzbekistan. Her varied advocacy interests include 2e concerns, equitable opportunities for all students, and systemic changes to make FAPE more likely in practice.
Secretary – Stephanie Smith
Stephanie Smith received a BA in Political Science from Northern Illinois University. She worked as a staffer on Capitol Hill for seven years and then moved to Africa to work on US government supported programs promoting democracy and governance in several developing governments. After seven years of this work she left the workforce when her son was born.
When her son was diagnosed with autism at two and a half she immersed herself in finding him all the resources available. As he entered the school system through the preschool program she has tried to learn all she could about the IEP process and trying to navigate the education system. She is especially interested in the inclusion classes and supports available to special education students in the general education classes.
Stephanie has been an active volunteer at her son’s school, and has served as Secretary and Special Education liaison on the board of their PTA. She introduced and manages a special education parent group sharing resources and hosting events between parents and staff. She has also worked with staff at the school to develop a buddy program and hold a Walk in My Shoes event.
Treasurer – Rebecca Leach
Rebecca Leach is excited to be joining SEPTA’s board this year as the treasurer. She has previously served on SEPTA’s mini-grants committee and just finished a three-year role as treasurer at her children’s elementary school PTA. She is the mother to three children in FCPS (two in elementary school, one entering middle school), two of which are twice-exceptional.Originally from the west coast, she studied international development at the University of Redlands and holds an MA from the School for International Training, with a focus on global development programs that improve the lives of people around the world. Her career in international development has given her the opportunity to live in Nepal, Mongolia, Russia, Korea, and Australia and to travel extensively around the globe supporting projects.
After having children, she has been able to limit her travel while still supporting development programs by utilizing skills in budgeting, financial management, and talent management. When not working, you can generally find her hunting for shark teeth on the beach, or in her garden.
Advocacy – Diane Cooper Gould & Michelle Cades
Awards – vacant
Communications – Kate Volpe
Educator Committee – Amy LaCrosse (seeking Co-Chair)
Events & Programming – Cheri Belkowitz
Fundraising – Renee Small
Membership & Outreach – Lenora Gumbs (seeking Outreach Co-Chair)
Military Families – Kaitlin Erkkila
Mini-Grants: Rich Hem
Reflections – vacant
SpEd Liaisons – Emily Sachdev
Twice Exceptional (2E) Committee – Emily Haeckel (seeking Co-Chair)
Underserved Populations – Margaret Behrns
Volunteers – Cathy Greulich
Delegates & Liaisons to Other Organizations
Advisory Committee for Students with Disabilities
Fairfax County Council of PTAs (FCCPTA)
Amanda Campbell (SEPTA Liaison to FCCPTA)
Larry Mills (FCCPTA Liaison to SEPTA)