The Madeleine Advisory Board is made up of experts in a variety of disciplines. The members consists of volunteer stakeholders from the parish, parent and business communities.  Their collective goal is to ensure the success of the school, its adherence to its mission, and its consistence with the principles set forth by the Diocese of Oakland Department of Catholic Schools.

The School Advisory Board consists of four standing committees and four representative bodies. The structure of our Board may be viewed here.

Screen Shot 2016-09-07 at 10.57.18 AMThe Board Chair facilitates the action, discussion and the collaboration of the members.

Advisory Board Chair: Mark de Souza
Over 15 years of experience as an entrepreneur and executive with a successful track record of forming, operating, and selling biotechnology companies in the rare disease and dermatology space. Mark served in multiple roles, including VP of Business Development, at Dyax Corp. (acquired by Shire plc) and as President and CEO of Lotus Tissue Repair, Inc. (acquired by Shire plc). He currently serves as President and CEO of Chromaderm, Inc., FIBRX Tissue Repair, Inc., and SCIDEC Therapeutics, Inc and as as a member of the board of directors of these companies and of PellePharm, Inc., GI Lipid Therapeutics, Inc., and NFlection Therapeutics, Inc.
Mark currently serves as Chair of the Advisory Board of the School of the Madeleine.

Screen Shot 2016-09-07 at 11.02.32 AMThe Finance Committee projects revenue and expenses throughout the year. The committee makes sure the school budgets appropriately and remains on track to achieve its financial goals and responsibilities.

Finance Chair: Barry Gremban

Over 25 years of financial accounting, management, planning and analysis. Barry spent 5 years as a Public Accountant with Deliotte and Touche and 17 years with the Bank of America.  Barry, working with Cushman & Wakefield, serves as the Finance Director for Adobe’s global commercial real estate portfolio.   Barry served St. John School for 6 years as the Finance Chair and was the force behind the school’s revival. Barry served on the SF Archdiocesan School Board’s ad hoc committee to create a benchmarking tool which assessed the operational and financial viability of over 50 archdiocesan Catholic schools. Barry is now in his 6th year serving as Finance Chair for the School of the Madeleine. 

The Facilities Committee is in charge of the buildings and facilities—not just their maintenance and repairs but their upgrades as we innovate the idea of the 21st Century classroom.

Facilities Chair: Mike Walmsley

I have 17 years of experience selling digital content, books, journals, and SaaS to organizations in the Publishing/Information Services industry. By consistently achieving revenue goals, I have held senior sales management positions at several leading companies. I have worked closely with key decision makers at universities, research institutes, and government organizations in 22 countries around the world. Notable achievements include attaining the company record for the highest annual sales from one customer, and winning as a new customer the largest research library in North America. Having conducted business on a global level, I possess an extensive knowledge of the worldwide library market, scholarly publishing trends, library collection development, content acquisition workflows, procurement procedures, and library management systems. My sales experience and wide-ranging perspective informs my work as a sales manager, and thus I can formulate effective selling strategies, motivate sales staff, accurately forecast sales for the company, develop a strong sales budget, and better manage risk. One of my strengths is consultative selling–my ability to listen carefully to customers’ needs, establish a relationship of trust and cooperation with the customer, craft a solution that meets their needs, and achieve sales success by increasing revenue and retaining that customer.

This committee works closely with the Principal and Advancement Director to increase in enrollment and oversee all communications on behalf of the school.

Marketing Chair: James Eli

James Eli, has over 21 years design experience focusing on Corporate and Brand Communication. His passion for creative exploration and strategic problem solving drives him to uncover compelling results. BFA Degrees in both Fine Art and Package Design ensure an approach that is insightful, practical and memorable.

James has produced engaging solutions in the following areas: Corporate/Brand Identity, Marketing Collateral, Packaging Programs, Signage Systems and Website Look & Feel.

in 2003 James started a solo design proactice called James Eli Design. In 2009 the name of the practice was changed to BrandN8 with a focus on Wine & Spirits Brand Identity Development & Package Design.


Screen Shot 2016-09-07 at 11.18.26 AMAdvancement oversees the Pledge Drive and helps raise funds so the school can remain on the cutting edge of education.

Advancement Chair: Debbie Dinneen

Debbie Dinneen is the Advancement Director and has worked part-time at the School of the Madeleine since 2010.  She and her husband, Rand Havens, have two children who graduated from the Madeleine.  While they were students, Debbie served as School Board President and Parents’ Association President, and held a variety of other volunteer positions.  She has also volunteered at F.A.C.E. and served on the Oakland Dioceses School Board. Debbie has a BA from the University of California Berkeley and a Masters in Library Science from San Jose State University.  Prior to her work at the Madeleine, she worked for many years as a law librarian.

Screen Shot 2016-09-07 at 11.16.14 AMThe Parents Association represents the general interests of the parents and is in charge of organizing all parent involvement with the school.

Parent Assoc. Rep: TBD

Screen Shot 2016-09-07 at 11.16.14 AMThe Parish Liaison committee works directly with the church parish and the school representatives to make sure we are meeting the goals of both organizations.

Parish Liaison: TBD

Screen Shot 2016-09-07 at 11.31.41 AMOur Mission Chair, Heather Skinner, ensures that all Board discussions and action items tie back to the School’s Mission and the Dominican Tradition.


Our Faculty Representative, Jennifer Walwark, brings the voice of the faculty and staff to Board level deliberations and in turn shares Board initiatives with the staff on a monthly basis.

The pastor, Fr. Nick Glisson, plays a vital role in shepherding the Advisory Board. The pastor reminds the Board of the broader parish ministry and the essential Catholic Identity of the school.

In concert with the pastor, the principal, Joseph Nagel, appoints all members of the Advisory Board, based on the needs of the Mission and the expertise of the individuals appointed.

Screen Shot 2016-09-07 at 11.58.11 AMMary Schweska, the Advisory Board Secretary is responsible for all the Board committee reports and action items. The Board Secretary facilitates all communication, documents all discussions and holds the Board members accountable for their specific action items.