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Southwest Orange Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019 1 year ago

Influencer of the Week: Katherine Johnson, The First Academy

Katherine Johnson serves as the Parent Association president at The First Academy.
by: Tim Freed Managing Editor

Before becoming a full-time mom, Katherine Johnson spent years building her organizational and time-management skills as a financial adviser and corporate trainer. Johnson’s background made her a natural fit for the role of parent association president. Not only has she spent time in the corporate world, but also she has had time as a stay-at-home mom. This duality helps her to easily connect with families, whether they’re working corporately or staying at home with their kids.


What do you love most about your school?

The First Academy community feels like a family. When we moved to Orlando four years ago, we wanted to find a school that aligned with our family values. The school not only cared about the education of our children, (it also) cared about the well-being of the whole child. The First Academy welcomed us with open arms, and we quickly felt like we had a family. I value the partnership that The First Academy fosters between home and school. The teachers and administrators pour the Gospel into our children each day. The school helps my husband and I to shepherd our children’s hearts.


What’s your favorite part of your role?

I have served with our Parent Association Executive Board in different capacities for the past two years, and my favorite part is seeing how the events and activities that the Parent Association puts on create an enriching experience for our families while building community. I love looking at the vision of The First Academy and coming up with practical ways that we can help foster fellowship. 


What made you want to take on this role?

I’ve always had a passion for serving, and I also found it was a great way to meet other families when we first moved here. I wanted to be a part of building the community that my children are involved in. 


What motivates you?

I’m motivated by making a difference and contributing to something that blesses others and impacts their lives now and in the future. I hope that the work of the Parent Association will not only bless our current students but also will help future generations of The First Academy students.


What’s the nicest thing a student, parent or faculty member has said to you or done for you?

I have enjoyed the opportunity to volunteer in the classroom. The thank yous and hugs of appreciation from my children’s classmates always warm my heart. 


How excited are you for the new school year?

We are all very excited for the new school year. While summer is a fun and special time, our family enjoys getting back into the rhythm of school routines. Our school year theme this year is “Stronger Together,” based on the verse 1 Corinthians 12:12, 26 — “There are many parts, but one body. … When one part suffers, we all suffer; when one part rejoices, we all rejoice.” I am excited for this theme, because I believe when parents are involved, it strengthens the school community. 


If you could take a vacation anywhere, where would you go?

My husband and I met on a ski trip in college, and we both love to ski and enjoy spending time in the mountains. Our favorite place to ski is Beaver Creek, Colorado. 


Cats or dogs?

Dogs! We have a 2-and-a-half-year-old yellow lab named Wyatt. He’s a huge teddy bear (who) loves to eat everything. 


What’s your favorite place to eat?

Born and raised in Dallas, Texas, my favorite meals are Tex-Mex and BBQ. There are so many delicious options in Orlando, and 4Rivers and Cocina 214 are two of my favorites.


Tim Freed was the managing editor for the West Orange Times & Observer and the Southwest Orange Observer. He previously spent six years covering the Winter Park/Maitland area and is a graduate of the University of Central Florida.


See All Articles by Tim

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