Brown named Phenix principal

Published 1:58 pm Wednesday, May 18, 2016

When she finished second grade, Jamie Brown thought that would be the end of her days at Phenix Elementary. Twenty-five years later, though, the Phenix native will be back in those same hallways, this time as the principal.

“I am very excited to be working with the students, parents, faculty and staff at Phenix next year,” said Brown.

“My parents helped instill in me a strong belief that education is a way for students to have options and choices, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to help build that strong foundation for these students.”

The transition sees the exit of another local product, Dr. Ann Nelson, after three years as the school’s principal. 

Nelson is retiring from public education after 31 years, during which time she served as a teacher, guidance counselor, and administrator in both Halifax and Charlotte County. 

Nelson indicates that one of the highlights of her career was teaching the Learn & Serve class for high school students and managing the grant associated with that class that allowed for the of beautification of the grounds at Randolph-Henry, the Early Learning Center and the Wayland Center in Keysville. 

“I have been truly blessed in my career, as there was never a time that work wasn’t meaningful and enjoyable and I have always had supportive groups of parents and supervisors,” said Nelson of her time in education.

“With regard to Phenix Elementary, it has been my pleasure to have served this school and community for the last three years. We hear many compliments about our school and our students here at Phenix, and we take a great deal of pride in who we are and what we stand for. I believe that Jamie (Brown) will fit well with that culture and will do an excellent job as principal.” 

A product of the Charlotte County school system, Brown brings to the position a strong background in education. 

She graduated as valedictorian from Randolph-Henry High School before moving on to receive a bachelor’s degree from Hollins University, a Master’s Degree in special education from Old Dominion University, and an Educational Specialist Degree in Educational Leadership from the University of Virginia.

As a teacher, Brown spent eight years in the classroom, all at Central Middle School.

While there, she served as a special education teacher, teaching math, science and social studies in both self-contained and co-teaching models, and as the school’s theater coach for several years.

Brown began her administrative career as assistant principal at Randolph-Henry High School, where she has served for the past three years, and hopes to use the combination of classroom and administrative experience that she has gained to benefit her new school.

“My goal as an administrator is to promote and establish strong relationships with everyone involved in our school,” said Brown, “and to help promote a culture and environment where all students have opportunities to grow and succeed and where both student and teachers are continuously learning and growing.”

Nancy Leonard, superintendent, expressed her appreciation for Nelson’s leadership at Phenix over the past three years.

“Dr. Nelson will certainly be missed. Ann has been an asset to Charlotte County Schools through the many capacities through which she has served. I am proud that Jamie Brown will be stepping into the leadership role at Phenix Elementary,” Leonard said.

“Ms. Brown is an outstanding administrator and has a strong background in instructional leadership and maintaining a positive learning environment for children and faculty. I am very pleased that Ms. Brown has enthusiastically accepted the appointment and will be returning to her home community of Phenix to serve as principal.”