the academies of hampton my future my journey

Tactical Teams

AoH Steering and Operating Committee Members
Tactical descriptions and areas of opportunities

Mary Bunting - City of Hampton

In 2009, Mary Bunting became the first female city manager for the City of Hampton since the position was created in 1956. She followed in the footsteps of her mother, who was city manager of Roanoke, Va. for many years and also enjoyed an illustrious career in public service.

Bunting began her career with the City of Hampton as an assistant to the city manager in January of 1990. In January of 1995, she was promoted to assistant city manager.

Highlights of her career include the creation of the award-winning 3-1-1 Customer Call Center, consolidation of three separate permit functions into a Central Permit Office, development of Hampton’s Crime and Grime campaign, organization of innovative neighborhood initiatives, including the creation of the Neighborhood Office, and coordination of the city’s emergency planning and response efforts for Hurricane Isabel and Tropical Storm Ernesto. In 2012, she was named a White House Local Innovation Champion of Change.

Bunting has a master's degree in Public Administration from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University and a Bachelor of Arts from Johns Hopkins University. She and her husband Mark have three children: Parker, Carter, and Hannah.

Jeffery Smith - Hampton City Schools

Dr. Smith began his tenure as superintendent of Hampton City Schools (HCS) on July 15, 2015. Prior to his employment with Hampton City Schools, he served as the superintendent of the Town of West Point Public Schools for seven years.

Under his leadership as superintendent with the Hampton City Schools, the school division has strengthened its dual enrollment program with Thomas Nelson Community College, to date yielding a 642 percent increase in the number of dual enrollment credits taken by HCS students. The on-time graduation rate has increased from 88 percent for the Class of 2015 to 92.6 percent for the Class of 2018. The dropout rate has decreased from 5.1 percent for the Class of 2015 to 1.57 percent for the Class of 2018. The division posted its highest accreditation rate in six years with 93 percent of the schools earning accreditation without conditions.

Dr. Smith is a recipient of the 2019 Peninsula Humanitarian Award from the Peninsula Chapter of the Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities (February 2019). He was also recently named the 2020 Virginia Superintendent of the Year.

Dr. Smith is married to the former Lorianne Samuel of Caroline County, a public school educator. They have two children, a daughter who is a graduate of Christopher Newport University and Eastern Virginia Medical School with a master in Public Health Policy and Management, and a son who is a senior at Bridgewater College.


Terry Brown - Fort Monroe National Monument

Terry E. Brown is the Superintendent of Fort Monroe National Monument and a long-time veteran of the National Park Service (NPS), with more than 27-years in federal service.

Under his leadership at Ft. Monroe, innovation is flourishing within youth initiatives that reach across all programs areas including science, interpretation, natural resources, law enforcement, cultural resources and administration.

Terry currently is working with partner organizations to prepare for the August 24, 2019 commemoration of the 400th Anniversary of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans in English North America, which will be culminated with the joint ribbon-cutting on a Fort Monroe Visitor Center by Fort Monroe Authority (FMA) and NPS. - AUGUST 24, 2019

Terry’s NPS career began at Upper Delaware Scenic & Recreational River. He also served as an Interpretive Park Ranger at Independence National Historic Site and as a Supervisory Park Ranger at National Mall & Memorial Parks. Additionally, he detailed as Site Manager at Old Post Office Tower, as Chief of Interpretation and Education at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, as Superintendent of Springfield Armory National Historic Site, and as Chief of Interpretation and Education at Boston National Historical Park. Prior to joining Ft. Monroe, Terry served for more than five years as the Site Manager of Boston African American National Historic Site.

Raised in a military family, Terry graduated from AFCENT Brunssum International High School in the Netherlands and returned to the U.S. to earn his Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice at Grambling State University. He is the recipient of several NPS awards and honors, including the Outstanding Service Award for 2004 Federal Executive Board of Excellence in Government with a category of Improved Federal Image. Terry was also awarded the 2017 Community Service Award from the City of Hampton.

Dr. John Caggiano - Hampton City Schools

Dr. John Caggiano began his position as deputy superintendent for curriculum and instruction for Hampton City Schools on July 1, 2015.

Dr. Caggiano has more than 20 years of educational experience and previously served as the executive director of school leadership for HCS for four years. In this role, he supervised 11 schools, as well as the Division’s Title I program.  He also managed the Division’s Title II grant and is the Project Team Lead for the HCS/Old Dominion University administrative cohort.

Dr. Caggiano began his teaching career at Burbank Elementary School, where he taught 4th and 5th grades. He served as an assistant principal at Syms Middle School before becoming principal of Asbury Elementary. In addition, he served as the principal of Syms Middle School for three years before serving as the principal of Westside Elementary School in Isle of Wight County Schools for four years.

Dr. Caggiano is also an adjunct professor at Old Dominion University, and served in a similar role at The College of William & Mary.  He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from James Madison University, and early childhood certification from Norfolk State University. He earned a Master of Education in Educational Leadership and Doctorate of Educational Administration from The College of William & Mary.

He has presented on a variety of educational topics across Virginia, and was named the HCS Teacher of the Year in 1998. Dr. Caggiano also recently co-authored a book on formative assessment leadership.  

Ann Cherry - Hampton School Board

Ann Cherry is Chair of the Hampton School Board. She is a native of Hampton and is a graduate of the former Phenix High School, West Virginia State University and Golden Gate University, where she earned a Masters of Public Administration degree. She is an educator and a published author, having written a book on conflict resolution that was published by the American Association of School Superintendents. A former Director of Conventions and Tourism for the City of Hampton, Ms. Cherry spent 17 years in Hampton City Schools as Executive Director of Public Relations, 7 years as Hampton University’s Director of University Relations and several years as the Newspapers in Education Coordinator for the Daily Press. She also briefed former First Lady Barbara Bush on early literacy, and won the Chicago Tribune’s highest award - the Tribune VALUES Award. She is a member of several organizations including the Citizens Police Advisory Board and the Hampton Branch NAACP. She has five grandchildren, and her two adult daughters are also graduates of Hampton City Schools. She is married to Lt. Alonzo Cherry.

Dr. John Dever - Thomas Nelson Community College

John Dever began his tenure as Thomas Nelson Community College’s eighth President on October 1, 2011. His career as an educator and administrator spans more than 40 years. Dr. Dever previously served as Executive Vice President for Academic and Student Services at Northern Virginia Community College (2004 – 2011). His background in higher education also includes service as Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs at Tidewater Community College (2000-2004); Dean of Instruction and Student Services at Blue Ridge Community College (1995-2000); and Professor of English and Chair of the Communications and Humanities Division at Thomas Nelson (1975-1995).

As a community college administrator, Dr. Dever has pursued research and been involved in major projects dealing with community college transfer, diversity and inclusion, general education, workforce development, developmental education, strategic planning, organizational leadership, and distance learning. He serves on the boards for the Peninsula Council for Workforce Development, WHRO, the Virginia Tidewater Consortium for Higher Education, GENEDGE, Riverside Lifelong Health, and Greater Peninsula NOW.

Dr. Dever received his bachelor’s degree in history from Bellarmine College, a master’s degree in English from the University of Kentucky, and a Ph.D. in English from the University of Virginia.

Jack Ezzell - ZelTech Inc.

Jack L. Ezzell, Jr. is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Zel Technologies, LLC (ZELTECH), one of the nation's premier professional services and engineering firms. Mr. Ezzell is a graduate of North Carolina A&T State University and holds an MBA degree from the Ohio State University. He is a retired U.S. Air Force Colonel who was recognized as a leader in applying advanced technology solutions to critical defense problems. Colonel Ezzell served in a number of significant military posts in the United States and Asia.

ZelTech has grown from a small consulting firm into a multi-faceted engineering, manufacturing and Information Technology corporation and is a recognized leader in the introduction of leading-edge technologies to support critical national and homeland security activities. Headquartered in Hampton, Virginia, ZELTECH has operations in multiple locations throughout the United States and abroad.

Mr. Ezzell has received numerous awards. He was Virginia's Small Business Person of the year, the state's Outstanding Industrialist and the Daily Press newspaper Distinguished Citizen of the Year. Old Dominion University awarded him an Honorary Doctorate Degree and its Distinguished Entrepreneurial Award. He has received Community Service Awards from local and national organizations, the prestigious Darden Award for Regional Leadership and was a 2011 inductee into the Hampton Roads' Business Hall of Fame.

Active in many civic and community organizations, he has served as a two-term Rector of the Norfolk State University Board of Visitors, Chairman of the NSU E2F Foundation, Chairman of the Hampton Roads Partnership, Chairman of the Hampton Industrial Development Authority, Chairman of the CIVIC Leadership Institute, Vice Chairman of WHRO, and Vice Chairman of the Jamestown/Yorktown Foundation. He currently serves on the boards of several public and private sector enterprises. Mr. Ezzell is a strong advocate for individuals with disabilities and chairs the Arc of the Virginia Peninsula. He is passionate about early childhood issues and established an innovative technology laboratory geared to children from kindergarten through fifth grade and to senior citizens. Mr. Ezzell spends a considerable amount of his personal time mentoring small business owners.

Michael Kuhns - AssociationOne LLC

General partner of AssociationOne LLC; recently retired president/CEO of Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce. Years with company: AssociationOne, 4 months; VPCC, 8 years City of office: Hampton City of residence: Newport News

Most significant work achievements in the past year: Organized and maintained a collaboration (Peninsula Economic Development Team) among the economic development directors of Hampton, Newport News, Poquoson, York County, James City County and Gloucester County focusing on GO Virginia initiatives and other economic development opportunities. On steering committee of Academies of Hampton (Hampton City Schools), an initiative designed to transform the educational process of Hampton’s future workforce. Participated on numerous tactical teams relating to business community engagement. Partnered with Hampton Roads Innovation Collaborative to bring forward the Foundation for Innovation Initiative creating a collaborative environment for technology firms throughout Hampton Roads.

Most significant board service: Vice chair, Thomas Nelson Community College Board; GO Virginia Region 5 Council; Governor-Elect’s Transition Policy Councils; Workforce Development and Veterans and Defense Affairs; board of directors, Downtown Hampton Child Development Center; board of directors, Hampton Roads Innovation Collaborative (formerly, HR Tech Council).

Most significant volunteer work: Co-chair, Fort Eustis Civic Leaders Association; vice president, legislative affairs, Langley Civic Leaders Association; organizer, Friends of Newport News Fire Department; National Advisory Board, National Center for the Prevention of Community Violence.

Charles Lyon - Northrop Grumman

Charles W. “Charlie” Lyon is the Corporate Lead Executive for the eastern regional office in Hampton, VA, representing all sectors and all business activities within those sectors. Lyon reports to T.C. Jones, Vice President of Aviation and ISR Programs, which is part of the company’s Government Relations office in Falls Church, VA.

As Corporate Lead Executive, Lyon responds to and represents Northrop Grumman to our customer base and to our peer industry partners/competitors and to all other smaller business leaders in the region. The region includes joint and Air Force customers across the continental United States and Europe, including European Command, Africa Command, Air Combat Command, Global Strike Command, Air & Education Training Command and US Air Forces Europe.

Lyon retired from the U.S. Air Force on September 1, 2013 after more than 32 years of service. His final assignment was Director of Operations, Headquarters, Air Combat Command, Hampton, Va. He was promoted to major general in 2010.

During his Air Force career, Lyon commanded at the squadron, group, wing and task force levels. He has extensive combat experience leading Airmen in Operations IRAQI FREEDOM/Northern Watch/Southern Watch/PROVIDE COMFORT (Iraq) and ALLIED FORCE (Serbia). A command pilot, Lyon has 3,800 hours in F-16, B-1, KC-135, E-8C, RC-135, RQ-1 and HH-60 aircraft, including more than 1,100 combat flying hours. As the 9th Air Expeditionary Task Force commander, he commanded Air Force forces in Afghanistan from 2010 to 2011.

Lyon earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from The Citadel, Charleston, S.C. and a master’s degree in national security strategy from the National War College, Ft. McNair, Washington, D.C. He also attended the U.S. Army Command & General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, KS.

William Mann- Peninsula Council for Workforce Development

William H. Mann, Jr, “Bill,” is a native Virginian who resides with his family in the Williamsburg area.  He received a B.A. Degree in Political Science from Christopher Newport College (now University) and an Army ROTC Commission from the College of William and Mary in 1971.  He continued his education earning a M.A. Degree in Public Administration in 1981 from Golden Gate University.  He has been employed as a consultant by the U.S. Department of Labor, various universities and research institutions engaged in workforce development activities and currently serves as the Executive Director for the Greater Peninsula Workforce Board.

Robert McKenna - Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce

Serves as the Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce’s President/CEO and responsible for the management and operation of the 1400+ member and affiliates business development organization. Coordinates the development of public policy, fosters strategic alliances, and serves as liaison with regional military commands and installations. Facilitates the solution of business related community issues through collaboration and facilitation by bringing solution-oriented resources together.

A 1984 graduate of the United States Merchant Marine Academy at King’s Point, NY. Was commissioned as an Ensign in the United States Naval Reserve and activated his commission in January 1985.

Served for 27 years as a Surface Warfare Officer, with service in five ships: USS Estocin (FFG-15), USS Fairfax County (LST-1193), USS Mobile (LKA-115), USS Belleau Wood (LHA-3) and USS Ponce (LPD-15).

Retired as a Captain in 2011 and returned, with his family, to make his home in Newport News, VA.

Since retirement, he worked as a contractor supporting the US Navy, and for a nine-month period as a Department of Veteran Affairs community liaison on the Peninsula, working to enhance educational and employment opportunities for transitioning service members and their families.

Married to Kathy for 33 years and they have four children.

Dr. Robert McNab - Old Dominion University

ROBERT M. McNAB, Professor, received his Bachelor of Arts from California State University, Stanislaus in 1991 and his Ph.D. in Economics in 2001 from Georgia State University in Atlanta, Georgia. He has published articles in the Applied Economics, Defense and Security Analysis, Economic Inquiry, Industrial and Corporate Change, National Tax Journal, Journal of International Trade and Economic Development, Public Budgeting and Finance, Small Wars and Insurgencies, and World Development, among others.

He is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Economic Surveys and a board member of Public Finance and Management and Management and Organizational Review. He has also served as a referee for Defense and Peace Economics, Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Journal of Public Economics, Public Finance and Management, Public Finance Review, Public Finance and Budgeting, Review of Financial Economics, World Development, and other journals.

His research interests include the outcomes of fiscal decentralization, defense economics, and topics in public finance. Professor McNab joined the faculty of Old Dominion University in July 2016. Previously, Dr. McNab was a member of the faculty of the Naval Postgraduate School in August 2000.

Mike Monteith - Peninsula Community Foundation

For many years, Mike has been dedicated to working toward improving the quality of life for citizens of the Virginia Peninsula. He has held various leadership roles in local government, retiring from the City of Hampton as Assistant City Manager.

Mike served as a special advisor to the Office of the Vice President of the United States focusing on intergovernmental relations and efficiency.

Mike has also owned and operated several successful businesses on the Peninsula and he is one of the founding board members of the Peninsula Community Foundation of Virginia.

The Board appointed Mike as CEO in November 2010.

Andrea Arnett - Sentara
Ann Bane - Hampton City Schools
Tina Banks-Gray - Peninsula YMCA
Claire Bellecci - Mellen Street Graphics
Seth Black - Hampton City Schools
Susan English - Thomas Nelson Community College

Phyllis Henry - Hampton School Board
Veronica Hurd
- Hampton City Schools
Kathryn Johnson - Alternatives, Inc.
Patricia Johnson - Hampton City Schools
Joe Kilgore - Hampton School Board
Mike Kuhns - Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce

Carla Mahn - Hampton City Schools
Margaret Mathews - Hampton City Schools
Robbin Ruth
- Hampton City Schools
Leonard Sledge - Hampton Workforce Economic Development
Chuck Swaim - Thomas Nelson Community College
Lisa Wornom-Zahralddin - Peninsula Council For Workforce Development

Tactical Descriptions and Areas of Opportunity

Tactical Teams develop and implement the Master Plan and engage the Hampton community throughout the transformation process.

  • Tactic Teams help to oversee the day-to-day activities associated with the Master Plan and report back to the Steering Committee.

  • Tactic Teams allow for cross pollination to occur by having the chair and vice chair for each Tactic Team sit on the Steering Committee.

  • Tactic Teams create shared responsibility with the Steering Committee whom finds resources and removes barriers to facilitate the work of the Tactic Teams.

Career Exploration Opportunities

Academies provide a variety of experiences to help students learn about career academy options in their communities. A highly visible one is the career exploration fair or expo, which offers students and their families. Academies create displays that describe their offerings, and business partners may also participate, helping students learn about potential career paths and employment options.

Communications and Marketing

Clear communication with the community about the plan for transformation and the role of career academies must be an ongoing process. This communication begins with developing the master plan, and it must continue through implementation. To support the academies and provide transparency and clarity of the academy process, a marketing campaign should be aimed at students, families, employers, postsecondary institutions, and the community at large.

Dual Enrollment

Academies provide students with opportunities for engaging in postsecondary learning opportunities while in high school, including dual enrollment courses and related experiences that award college credit and articulated credit.

Freshman Academies

The Freshman Academy is a transitional program for incoming high school students. Interdisciplinary teams of teachers help freshman academy students develop and practice a range of skills they need for success in school and the workplace. The freshman academy also introduces students to the culture of a career academy and to the career academy options available to them, typically beginning in grade 10.

Parent/Family Engagement

Districts, schools, and career academies use a variety of proactive strategies to build partnerships with families to support their children’s success in school and preparation for further education and careers.

Shared Accountability

The master planning process identifies systems and processes for monitoring tactical plan implementation fidelity and quality and for using indicators and measures for assessing the achievement of intended outcomes, primarily focused on the desired graduate.

Steering Committee

The needs of our local and state economy, along with student interests, will need to be considered when developing additional pathways. The tactic team will examine existing pathways, view these against workforce projects, and suggest priorities for future pathways. If you would like to be considered for the Steering Tactical Team, please contact Veronica Hurd at

Workplace Learning Experience for Teachers

Academies provide a variety of experiences to help students learn about academy-related career options in their communities. One of the major annual offerings is the Career Fair Expo, where academies and business partners can display and describe their offerings to both parents and students. These exploration opportunities allow students to learn about potential career paths and employment options.

What are the academies?

Your Pathway to Success

Creating purposeful learning communities through hands-on experiences and career-focused learning environments.


16 Academies 41 pathways

The Academies of Hampton

Providing students with a clear path for graduation and a smooth transition from high school to postsecondary college and careers.



steering committee

Steering & Operating

Guiding our Academies through Community Leadership.


get engaged

Get Involved Today!

Bettering our students, our educators, and our communities through strong partnerships.


student resources and opportunities

The Academies of Hampton

Providing career-related events, resources, and opportunities!


The Academies of Hampton

The Academies of BHS

The Academies of HHS

The Academies of KHS

The Academies of PHS



the academies of hampton my future my journey
Tenth through twelfth grade students participate in academies organized around themes that support high-demand, high-skill careers in the Hampton Roads region. Academy students graduate with a plan for a successful future and network of support to guide them along their way!

Aoh of BHS

Aoh of HHS

Aoh of KHS

Aoh of PHS

2019-2020 programs of study