Board of Directors

The Board meets quarterly, or as necessary, to review budget, program, and other related issues. Board members serve staggered two-year terms.

Nola Smith  - Chairman

Nola has been in education for over thirty years. She established Pacific Learning Solutions,Inc., a tutoring service and learning disabilities instructional center, in 1986 in Arlington, Washington. She is a founding director of 21st Century Music Ministries, established in 2003. This ministry recruits, trains, and sends young talented musicians to perform in the United States and overseas. Nola has also been recorded at Universal Studios singing in musical ensembles and solo.

Nola is the wife of Sherlund Smith, a retired police captain for Edmonds, Washington. Nola and Sherlund both enjoy horseback riding, raising Golden Retrievers, reading, and all of the blessings of God, which include four grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

John Elliot -- Secretary

John is a homeschool dad who works at Boeing in their training and education department.  He also works with his wife Tammie in runnng a learning center Puget Sound Academic Services.   

Miles Ulrich  - Treasurer 

Miles has worked over 25 years in software development. He was Vice President of Technology at Wall Data and more recently a manager at Microsoft. Since leaving Microsoft in 2005, Miles has taught math, science, and computer programming. In addition to teaching for Academy Northwest, he is owner / director of Mathnasium in Redmond, WA. He also founded LightShine Software to aid non-profit organizations with IT issues. Miles has a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Harvey Mudd College.

Miles and his wife, Kathy, have homeschooled since their first child was old enough. Their four children are currently aged 9 through 18. In 2006, the family went on an extended field trip for 11 months around the United States.

Candice Broman Childs  - Director

Candice is a cofounder of Family Academy, and has worked for the development and expansion of the school for the past two decades. Candice graduated Magna cum Laude from Seattle Pacific University in 1972 with a degree in Political Science. Her administrative experience and organizational skills are a great asset to this board. Candice is also the co-author of Homeschooling the High Schooler, a speaker for several homeschool conventions and a sought after speaker to local homeschool support groups and organizations. She is the mother of two adult children, both former Academy Northwest students.

Diana McAlister  - Director

Diana is the cofounder of an innovative private school extension program, Academy Northwest, an Affiliate of Family Academy and of Family Academy. Currently Diana chairs the Board of Academy Northwest which matriculates between 120 and 150 students a year. A graduate of Central Washington University (cum laude) in 1975, Diana taught in a one-room public school followed by 5 years of traditional classrooms. Said experience forced the creation of an alternative type of school. A Master's degree (magna cum laude) in 1992 from Western Washington University convinced her of the need to nurture a better choice for parents and students.   She has owned and operated an education consulting business serving homeschooling families since 1981. She is also the co-author of Home Schooling the High Schooler, instructor of a parent qualifying class for homeschool eligibility, teacher  /speaker at homeschool conventions in Montana, Hawaii and Washington, and is a frequent speaker for numerous homeschool support groups statewide.  She is married and the parent of four daughters; all of whom have graduated from Academy Northwest. Two of her daughters are now teachers as well.