Meet the Staff

Jim Power

Dr. Jim Power
Head of Schools

Dr. Power became Culver’s 13th Head of Schools in 2016 succeeding John N. Buxton who led Culver for 17 years.

Born and raised in Philadelphia, Pa., Dr. Power has a bachelor’s degree in English from The College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts, a master’s degree in the art of teaching from Boston College, and an Ed.D in educational leadership from Boston University. He also attended Columbia University on a Klingenstein Visiting Heads Fellowship.

Dr. Power started his career in independent schools in New England and taught at both the elementary and high school levels, at both co-ed and single-sex schools, and at both boarding schools and day schools. Dr. Power has served as head of Georgetown Preparatory School, a boys’ school in North Bethesda, Md., and Principal of Upper Canada College, a boys’ school in Toronto, Canada.

Dr. Power served as a trustee on the International Boys Schools Coalition Board and is former chair of the Secondary School Admission Test Board (SSATB). A contributing author to The Head’s Handbook: A guide for aspiring, new, and experienced Heads of School, he also serves on the faculty of the NAIS Institute for New Heads.

Dr. Power and his wife Mary have five children.

Holly Johnson

Holly C. Johnson
Chief Advancement Officer

Holly Johnson is the Culver Academies’ Chief Advancement Officer. Holly came to Culver from the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra where she served as the Vice President of Development from 2013-2016. As a member of the senior management team, she was responsible for the ISO’s overall fundraising initiatives, which included campaigns to increase annual fund giving, major gifts, corporate and foundation sponsorships, planned giving, and special events revenue. 

From 2010-2013, Holly served as the Indiana University Foundation’s Director of Women’s Philanthropy. She managed all aspects of the program, including the establishment of the Women’s Philanthropy Council (WPC) in partnership with IU first lady, Laurie Burns McRobbie. Prior to her promotion to Director of Women’s Philanthropy, Johnson served as IU Foundation’s Director of Development, major gifts from 2008-2010.

Holly began her fundraising career at the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra in 1999. She served as the ISO’s corporate donor relations associate from 1999-2002 and associate director of corporate giving from 2002-2006. Upon promotion to director, she led corporate and foundation giving from 2006-2008. In 2003, Johnson conceived and established the ISO’s FORTE young professional association – an active, dynamic group dedicated to mentoring future community leaders and supporting the Orchestra.

Holly is a 1999 graduate of the IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs where she serves as an adjunct instructor and guest lecturer. In 2015, the IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs invited her to join its Distinguished Alumni Council. Other honors include a 2011 Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) Circle of Excellence Silver Award, which honors programs that epitomize the profession’s best practices, raise standards, and contribute to a growing body of knowledge about advancement. Holly also earned a Certificate in Fund Raising Management from the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.

Holly is married to Scott Johnson, who graduated from CMA in 1994 (Band) with honors in Russian and from Woodcraft in 1989 (D&B). Their two children, Ava and Finnley, are current Woodcrafters.

Kevin MacNeil

Dr. Kevin MacNeil
Chief Academic Officer

Dr. MacNeil joined the Culver Academies’ faculty in 1999 as Director of Studies and was appointed Chief Academic Officer two year later. He earned a bachelors degree in mathematics from Bard College in 1981, a masters degree in mathematics from Brown University in 1984, a master’s degree in philosophy from the University of Illinois in 1989 and a Ph.D. in philosophy from that same institution in 1992.

He has taught a variety of courses at the college and secondary school levels in humanities, literature, mathematics and philosophy. Dr. MacNeil has given lectures and workshops on teaching and learning, (especially the teaching and learning model of the Academies) and faculty professional development to audiences in the United States and Canada.

He and his wife Denise Burnham, who supervises evening activities, have two daughters, Clara CGA ’08 and Sophie.

Josh Pretzer

Josh Pretzer
Dean of Faculty

Josh Pretzer is the Culver Academies’ Dean of Faculty. Since joining the Culver faculty as a Faculty Intern in 1999, he has taught biology, chemistry, and leadership, and currently teaches the freshman and 4th classmen in Culver’s Living, Learning, Leading course. Dean Pretzer assisted with cross country, track, and swimming during his first seventeen years at Culver and served as an Assistant Dean in Academics and for the Faculty from 2006 until his appointment to Dean of Faculty in 2016.

Dean Pretzer completed a Masters' degree in Educational Leadership from Teachers College, Columbia University as part of the 2006 Klingenstein Center for Independent School Leadership cohort. He is a 2013 Class of ’63 Exemplar, a 2008 Williamson Fellow, and held the Eppley Chair of Science. He is also honored to have received the Ralph N. Manuel Award from the student body in 2004 and General Delmar T. Spivey Award from the Academic Department Chairs in 2003.

Outside of his responsibilities at Culver, Dean Pretzer collaborated on a National Science Foundation grant project Active Chemistry, leads as a Fellow for the Folio Collaborative, serves on the Board of Directors for the Culver Boys and Girls Club, and Co-Directs the Klingenstein Summer Institute for early career teachers. He has presented at a number of national conferences and led workshops around the country on professional growth and development, each opportunity inspired by the work being done at Culver.

Dean Pretzer spends all of his time outside work with his wife, Erin, and two young children, Madeline and Finn.

Lisa Barenie

Lisa Barenie
Chief Advancement Officer Assistant

Lisa Barenie joined the Culver Academies Head of Schools office in 2011. She has been with the Academy since 1994. Prior to this position Lisa worked in the Accounting Department from 1994-1998 and was a member of the Huffington Library Staff from 1998-2011. Lisa now serves as the Administrative Assistant to the Chief Advancement Officer. She and her husband Jeff have lived in the Culver area since 1979.

Julie Bess

Julie Bess
Assistant to the Chief Academic Officer

Julie Bess joined the Culver Academies Head of Schools office in 2009. She now serves as the Administrative Assistant to the Dean of Faculty. Julie is a graduate of CGA Class of 1983. She has a B.A. from Purdue University.

Elisabeth B. Davis

Elisabeth B. Davis

Elisabeth B. Davis joined Culver Academies on March 15, 1936 and worked in the Admissions Office until 1954. She and her husband Eldon were blessed with two children, and she returned to work in 1962 in the Academic Office. On January 30, 1970 she was transferred to the Head of Schools office, where she continues to work.

Meet Ms. Davis

Gerri Quivey

Gerri Quivey
Head of Schools Assistant

Gerri Quivey joined the Culver Academies Head of Schools office in 2006. She now serves as the Administrative Assistant to the Head of Schools. Her responsibilities include assisting the Head of Schools in his daily duties. Mrs. Quivey is married and has two children.