Board of Trustees

Mrs. Margaret Fippinger, M.Ed.

A native Arizonian, Margaret has a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership, a Bachelor of Science degree in Education and a minor in Business Administration from Northern Arizona University. She is also a Licensed Massage Therapist. Margaret has worked with curriculum, state standards, conducted staff development, and taught grade four through college classes; plus worked in the Bisbee Unified School District Business Office. Her career has included employment with the Cartwright, Bisbee and Douglas Unified School Districts and Mesa Public Schools.

Since 2010 Margaret has volunteered at NVCA as a member of the Parent Teacher Fellowship, Scholastic Book Fair Chairperson, Capital Campaign team, and oversees both the preschool and elementary libraries.


Mrs. Mary Alice Hegreness, B.A.

Mary Alice is a licensed Real Estate agent with Hegreness Realty, LLC in Anthem, Arizona, living in Anthem since 2000.. Mary Alice has over 20+ years in the field of education. She graduated from Oregon State University with a Bachelor of Education degree and was in charge of reading programs for all grade levels in the Reynolds School District in Troutdale, Oregon, where she also taught second grade. Mary Alice received her Washington State teaching certificate and earned her endorsement in Special Education from Seattle Pacific University. Upon earning her certification, she taught for the Bellevue School District in Washington State. In 1994, Mary Alice trained with Portland State University to bring the Reading Recovery program into the Bellevue School District.


Mr. Greg Korpita, M.B.A.

Greg is an experienced finance and operations executive with 20+ years in business. He most recently was joint owner of Interim Healthcare, a privately held company. Greg has an MBA from the University of Hartford, and a business degree in economics from St. Anselm’s College.


Dr. Fred Laughlin

Fred is a partner with The Andringa Group where he consults with nonprofit boards and their CEOs. His specialty is in developing board policy manuals and he has co-authored a book on the subject, published in 2007. He retired in 2001 from PricewaterhouseCoopers after 29 years with the firm, where he was the Managing Partner of the government consulting practice as well as a member of the US and Global Board of Directors. He is an adjunct professor of leadership at Grand Canyon University and an instructor in the National Center for Leadership in Washington, DC.


Dr. Arlin Ness

Arlin is President Emeritus of Star Commonwealth, a nationally and internationally recognized youth-care organization. He was with Starr for over 38 years, serving as president from 1981 to 2004. Arlin has co-authored the books Re-educating Troubled Youth: Powerful Environments for Teaching and Treatment and No Disposable Kids. He has lectured on the national and international level for numerous seminars and conferences.


Dr. Jack Preus

Jack is an educational entrepreneur who has a passion for engaging teachers, school leaders and institutions in advancing Christian education through innovation and by creating sustainable systems for student achievement and instructional improvement. Jack strives to leverage creativity and an entrepreneurial spirit to bring hope to students in some of the most under-served areas of our country.

Jack began his career as a teacher and administrator serving students at Orange Lutheran High School in Orange, CA. while finishing his Ed.D. in Educational Leadership at UCLA. In 2014, he joined Educational Enterprises, Inc. (EEI) as the National Director of People Development working to support the team to advance its mission nationally by growing its school networks (HOPE Christian Schools and EAGLE College Prep public charter schools) as well as its Christian wraparound programs (Compass Educational Programs).

In addition to his work at Educational Enterprises, he also works to advance this mission for children by participating in a variety of national speaking engagements and committees. Jack is a member of Christ’s Greenfield Lutheran Church in Gilbert, Arizona.


Dwight Saunders, JD

Dwight is Executive Director of International Voice of the Orphan Foundation which is a nonprofit with a special emphasis on orphans with special needs. Dwight is also an Adjunct Professor at Grand Canyon University. Dwight served as a Pastor of churches in Durango, Colorado and Amelia, Virginia. Dwight received his Juris Doctorate from Suny at Buffalo and served as an Attorney at Law for the American Center for Law and Justice.


Mr. Brad Stewart, B.B.A.

Brad serves as Vice President-Treasury and Financial Risk Management at Swift Transportation and is a licensed CPA in Texas and Arizona. Previously, Brad has held various financial leadership roles with Swift during Swift’s going private-transaction. Brad has a B.B.A. in finance and accounting and a B.A. in mathematics from Abilene Christian University in Texas.


Mr. Gary Yiatchos, M.B.A.

Gary is a senior retail executive with 30+ years of merchandising and marketing experience with leading retailers, Federated and Saks Department Store Groups. He also served as a marketing and client advocate for key national and regional retail clients on using customer data for engagement and communication strategies. Gary has an MBA from the University of Washington, and a BA degree in marketing and organizational behavior from Seattle Pacific University.


Mr. Nate Kretzmann, M.Ed. CFRE
Executive Director, Board Ex-officio

Nate holds both a Master’s degree in Educational Administration and a Bachelor’s degree in Education from Concordia University Irvine, California. He holds a Superintendents Certification from ACSI and in addition has earned international certification as a professional fundraising executive-CFRE. Nate also has ‘minister of religion’ certification from the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. Nate has thirty years of teaching and leadership experience in education from early childhood through the university level. He has served on several non-profit boards, has been a national education conference speaker, and a school consultant on leadership, strategic planning, school advancement, and fundraising.