Roy Parker, Head of School
Columbia University, BA
University of Colorado, JD
Roy Parker has spent close to three decades teaching in and leading independent schools. He has taught Kindergarten through 12th grade, inclusive; designed three middle school buildings and programs; and, has led both boys and girls high school basketball teams to state tournaments (while honored as coach of the year).
Roy was appointed Commissioner to the Nevada Commission for Educational Excellence (2007). As elementary, middle and high principal of a charter school for at-risk students, Parker’s students and teachers received Exemplary and High Achieving acclaim for their academic accomplishments
When Roy is not with his family or at school, he runs (many marathons), bikes or herds cats (four in the family currently). email >
Tess Miner-Farra, Associate Head of School
Wells College, BA
University of Utah, MA
Quote: "It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers." - James Thurber
Raised in Manhattan and then upstate New York in a family of writers,teachers and avid readers, Tess studied English and Philosophy at Wells College, then started her teaching career in the English department at Phillips Andover Academy in Massachusetts, where she coached soccer,xc-skiing and directed a freshman girls' dormitory.
In 1996 at the University of Utah, Tess completed a Masters degree that she started at Middlebury College's Bread Loaf School of English, married husband John and moved back to NY to teach English and History at the National Sports Academy in Lake Placid. During the next six years, Tess taught every level of secondary English, SAT Prep, served as the Director of College Counseling, Faculty liaison to the Board, and Academic Dean.
After the birth of their first daughter, the family moved to Maine in support of John's work and Tess spent the next six years at home with Lina and Hanna, teaching College Composition and coordinating a college-readiness program at the University of Maine at Presque Isle. The Farras returned to Utah in 2008 and in 2009, Tess brought her independent school experience to Park City Day School, along with her two daughters,who now enjoy the extraordinary benefits of a PCDS education.
Tess, John, Lina and Hanna take full advantage of the spectacular Utah weather, hiking, trail running, camping and otherwise "keeping up" with the newest member of the family, a border collie mix named "Roxy." email >
Melanie Pickens, Academic Dean & LS Academic Director
Brigham Young University, BA
University of Tennessee, MS
Quote: ”When life hands you lemons, make orange juice and leave them wondering how you did it." --Anonymous
Melanie Pickens began teaching as a middle school history teacher in Texas. During her eleven years in the classroom, Melanie has taught in five states, in both public and private settings, to a wide range of students, including gifted and special needs students.
After completing her Master’s degree in Educational Administration and Supervision, Melanie served as the Middle School Dean of Students at an independent school in Memphis and as the Director of Educational Technology, Summer Programs and After School Programs at Park City Academy.
Melanie enjoys spending time with her daughters.Whenever possible they love to take advantage of the recreational opportunities in the Park City area. email >
Lauri Linton, Early Childhood Director
Columbia University, BA
Bank Street College ofEducation, MS
Quote: "Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve meand I learn." — Benjamin Franklin
Lauri Pendray Linton has been a classroom teacher for preschool-aged children for more than 10 years in both regular and special educational settings. In addition, she has developed parenting programs, staff development workshops, and curriculum models.
Lauri also works as an educational consultant for Learning Pathways, achildren’s media company in New York City. In this role, she teams withdesigners to develop concept ideas for toys and games, and conductsobservational research of young children at play with the designedmaterials. This research has contributed to subsequent concept ideas andfurther developed the overall child development databases for LearningPathways.
In addition to her academic education, Lauri has pursuedcertification in massage therapy. In her spare time, she enjoys running,skiing, hiking, and a good book. email >
Lindsay Wellman, Middle School Director
Hamilton College, BA
Quote: “The question is not what you look at, but what you see.” — Henry David Thoreau
During her time at Hamilton College, Lindsay Wellman studied ceramics and glass under the guidance of internationally recognized glass artist Robert Palusky.
Inspired by his dedication and passion, Lindsay decided to focus her studio art degree in pottery, and stayed on after graduation to work in the ceramics studio as an artist-in-residence. For two years she was responsible for all studio materials and equipment, and assisted with undergrad instruction in sculpting, pottery, and glass. During this time Lindsay worked on developing her portfolio, participated in various art shows, and was featured in several local galleries.
After moving to UT, Lindsay taught Art and helped lead Outdoor Education programs at The Colby school for four years before becoming the heart and soul of Park City Day School's Visual Art program in 2010. In the spring of 2013, Ms. Wellman was promoted to lead the growing Middle School at Park City Day school, bringing impressive breadth and depth of relevant experience in education and leadership. Already actively engaged with the school's Outdoor Education program, Lindsay’s extensive background in outdoor leadership, team building, experiential education, leadership and customer service make her a gifted and effective leader for the Middle School team. In addition, her evident success at integrating creativity, collaboration, character development and interdisciplinary content into her classroom and her mentoring of new teachers demonstrates a fluency with those 21st century skills that we aim to develop in our students - including collaboration, creativity, critical thinking, and effective communication. email >
Janice James, 4th Grade
University of Utah, BS
Quote: “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the lifeyou have imagined.” —Henry David Thoreau
After graduating from the University of Utah, Janice James began her teaching career in Jackson Hole, WY, working at a residential school for students with severely and profoundly handicapping conditions.After returning to Utah, she taught in a variety of settings, including the Jordan School District and parochial schools.
Over the past 25 years, Janice has taught reading, honors English and language arts, and has coached volleyball, basketball and cheerleading. She is passionate about children and loves to help each child discover his or her unique talents and gifts.
An avid gardener and novice decorator, Janice likes to spend time with her sisters, daughter and son-in-law. When she’s not working, she can be found walking, watching movies, and learning to play the guitar. email >
Joanne Staral, Faculty Mentoring Team Director
University of Wisconsin-Madison, BS
Quote: “You must be the change you want to see in the world.”—Mahatma Gandhi
Encouraged to enter the world of education by an inspirational high school instructor, Joanne Staral began her teaching career at the middle school level in Madison, Wisconsin. She came to Park City with a strong background in child development and reading, and had the opportunity to work with an amazing group of students at the middle and elementary school level. Nearly three decades later, she now puts her teaching expertise to work for first graders at the Park City Day School, where she enjoys the challenge and creative freedom of the independent school setting.
Joanne’s teaching approach emphasizes engaging activities that bring learning to life and collaborative projects that teach children to work cooperatively in the classroom. She has a passion for educating her students about the earth and the significance of “treading lightly as we go about our daily lives. Joanne co-founded the greenhouse program at the Colby campus and looks forward to expanding the instructional reach of the gardening program in the future.
Away from the classroom, Joanne likes to ski, bike, fly fish and hike in the beautiful mountains surrounding Park City. email >