Dimensions Family School Board
Anne Dillon, Board President
Anne was born in Albany, NY and raised in Overland Park, Kansas. Anne joined Dimensions to help create the school she wishes she had gotten to go to when she was a kid. Growing up, she struggled to feel engaged in school. After studying for several years at the University of Kansas and DePaul University in Chicago, she left to join the workforce. She worked in the insurance and financial services industry for five years before leaving to stay home with her first-born son. A lifelong lover of photography, Anne taught herself photography and ran her own photography and photo instruction business for 10 years. In 2012 Anne and her family moved from Kansas City to Durham when she began homeschooling her three boys. She served on the Chapel Hill Homeschoolers board as co-leader from January 2014 through January 2016.
Meg McElwee, Secretary
Meg McElwee, M.Ed, is a certified AMI Montessori guide, mother of three young children, artist and small-business owner. She spent the years before motherhood teaching 3-6 year-olds in a one-room Montessori school in rural Mexico. She is passionate about interest-led, wonder-infused education, and has brought aspects of Waldorf, Reggio-Emilia, and Project-Based learning into her own kids’ homeschooling experience. As an artist, she particularly enjoys designing beautiful learning environments that allow children to become self-directed learners. When not supporting her own children’s life-long learning journeys, she spends her time sewing, knitting, writing, hiking, biking, and modeling healthy living for her family.
Teri Blackmore, Treasurer
Teri Blackmore grew up in corn country, near Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. She quite enjoyed elementary and high school, and she graduated as a National Merit Scholar. Teri earned an associate degree in graphic design at Parkland Community College and later obtained a BA in Communication at the University of Minnesota. She tumbled into her primary career — fundraising and development — when she began volunteering for her local community radio station. She has since served as Development Director for a number of nonprofits, including Tapestry Folkdance Center, WomenVenture (a women’s justice and job training organization), Friends School of Minnesota, The American Hiking Society, and the National Funding Collaborative for the Prevention of Violence. Her most recent employment was working for the U.S. State Department and the Ambassador to Kenya, running a competitive grants program that provides funds to Kenyan self-help groups constructing village water projects, enhancing employment training centers, and creating innovative income-generating activities. Teri has two teenagers (13 and 16) and has been homeschooling them for the last ten years. She believes Dimensions Family School is a fantastic asset to the Triangle homeschool community and could serve as a model for other places with a significant homeschooling population.
Niambi Jaha-Echols, Trustee
Niambi Jaha-Echols is a native Chicagoan with over 30 years experience working with various modalities of creativity. She is the Founder and President of The Butterfly Movement which provides an atmosphere of quality experiential learning for women and girls through ‘Cross Pollination’ and working in collaboration with other organizations with similar missions (particularly those that address the growing needs of teenaged girls and help break the perpetual cycle of negative self-image and social outcomes). Niambi has a BA in Fine Art from Columbia College Chicago, with graduate hours in art therapy from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is a co-contributor to the book “African Americans and Community Engagement in Higher Education”, published by SUNY Press, September 2009. She is also the author of “Project Butterfly” and “Inspiring The Souls of Our Girls”. Niambi is currently serving on the National Board of Directors for the American Camp Association and has served on various boards both locally and nationally in the past. She has been featured in Essence Magazine, Ebony Magazine and on MSN.com. She has also been recognized by the State of Illinois and Essence Magazine, as a woman who is “shaping the world.” She is also currently a faculty member of Expert Online Training. In 2014, Niambi, her husband Rod, their 12-year-old son Jelani and their german shepherd, Xarko, moved to Chapel Hill and are in their first year of homeschooling.
Dan Dillon, Trustee
Dan Dillon grew up in Glencoe, IL, attended New Trier High School and went on to earn a B.A. in English and French from the University of Kansas. After graduating in 1992, he joined the U.S. Peace Corps and taught English-as-a-second-language for two years in Morocco. He returned to the States in 1995 and began teaching French to business professionals. He earned an M.A. in English and his secondary-level teaching certificate from DePaul University in 1999. He taught English at Olathe East High School in suburban Kansas City for several years. Deciding to pursue a new career path, he has worked in business communications and marketing for a range of companies, focusing mainly on technology. He moved with his family to Durham in 2012 so his three boys could have greater access to a diversity of educational opportunities. He currently works as the director of marketing at Automated Insights in Durham. His three sons have been homeschooled since 2012.