Dr. Jennifer Freeman Smith is a FACE Project Board Member. She brings a passion for multicultural and multilingual education, issues of social justice, and organizational development. She earned her bachelors in Linguistics from Bryn Mawr College and her doctorate in Education from the University of Pennsylvania. Before moving to Charlottesville, she worked as the director of a national capacity building assistance project for HIV prevention in rural and migrant Latino communities, as an adjunct professor of English and Education courses, and as an ethnographer of HIV risk communities. In her spare time, she enjoys gardening, photography, and road trips with her family.
Lauren Kershner, M.Ed, Ed.S
A graduate of The College of William & Mary (B.A.) and James Madison University (M.Ed., Ed.S.), Mrs. Kershner is a licensed, professional school counselor with pK-12 experience. As a first-year counselor, she worked at the elementary school level, split between two school buildings in Page County, VA. The following year, Mrs. Kershner secured a position closer to home and spent the next four years as a counselor at Harrisonburg High School. After a move to relocate closer to her husband’s job in Nelson County, VA, Mrs. Kershner is back in the elementary school counselor role, currently at Central Elementary School in Amherst, VA. Lauren is an active board member of the Virginia School Counselor Association (VSCA) and enjoys spending time with her family; Harrison – 5, Violet – 20mos., and her husband, Phil.
Peter Lovegrove, Ph.D., Research and Evaluation Expert Consultant
Peter has over 15 years’ experience conducting research in youth development and program effectiveness, with expertise in applied quantitative research, survey data collection, data management, and non-experimental, quasi-experimental and experimental evaluations. He received his PhD from the University of Colorado–Boulder in 2010, and completed a postdoc at the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia in 2013. He has over 25 published articles, book chapters, and reports. He has completed evaluation review training with the What Works Clearinghouse and worked with the Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development, which uses rigorous peer reviews of youth development, violence prevention, and intervention programs using strict program effectiveness standards. He is currently a Research Director at JBS International, Inc. Peter’s interests include biking, yoga, cooking, reading comics, and going on outdoorsy adventures with his son Cyrus.
Jeff Patz, Program Coordinator
Jeff has spent over 20 years in elementary education, as a teacher and After
School Director. Originally from Northern Virginia, Jeff relocated to Charlottesville in 2016 and directed the After School Program at Baker Butler Elementary School in Albemarle County Public Schools.
Jeff graduated from George Mason University with a Political Science degree, then later received his teaching license with the state of Virginia.
Jeff enjoys going to UVA football and basketball games with his family and watching his son play basketball and soccer and his daughter master gymnastics and ballet.
He joined The FACE Project in 2018, and believes Character Education is essential for our youth these days and an integral part of an elementary education.