Our Faculty and Staff
Saint John Paul II Catholic School (SPJII) is firmly committed to recruiting the most qualified professionals available to be members of our faculty and staff. An interested, enthusiastic, and devoted faculty is an integral part of providing the finest education possible. Our teachers are our most important resource. As dedicated and talented professionals, they strive to reach every student. Saint John Paul II Catholic School is proud to have an impressive, innovative, creative, and concerned staff.
About Mr. John Donohue III
A graduate of Magdalen College, Bedford, New Hampshire, Mr. Donohue holds advanced degrees from Boston College, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, and Weston Jesuit School of Theology, Cambridge, Massachusetts. He also studied in the doctoral program in education administration at the University of Massachusetts, Boston.
Mr. Donohue began his career teaching history, literature, and theology at Seton High School, Manassas, Virginia, and political philosophy and Catholic social teaching at Christendom College, Front Royal, Virginia, followed by twenty years teaching and in director positions at his alma mater, Magdalen College. He then was headmaster, taught, and coached soccer and basketball at Mount Royal Academy, Sunapee, New Hampshire, where he was director and co-founder of the academy's high school. Mr. Donohue later accepted the position of principal of St. Egbert Catholic School in Morehead City, North Carolina, before serving as principal of John Paul II High School in Greenville.
About Deborah Lawson
It is with an open heart, open ears, and an open mind, that Mrs. Lawson comes to St. John Paul II School each day! With love of children, learning, and education, Mrs. Lawson can be seen snapping photos of your beautiful children, giving tours to new prospective families, or touring benefactors around the campus. Mrs. Lawson has been involved with St. John Paul II School since its inception and is somewhat of a school historian.
In addition, Mrs. Lawson’s responsibilities include admissions, advertising and public relations, major gifts, donor coordination and retention, and fundraising. Among her other activities, Mrs. Lawson is currently president of the Board of Directors of Life Care Pregnancy Center in Carthage, NC. She is a NC licensed real estate agent, which she has held for over 20 years. She is a member of, and participates in church activities at St. Anthony of Padua in Southern Pines.
Mrs. Lawson resides in Southern Pines with her husband Jim, son Christopher (SJPII class of 2016), and daughter Meghan (SJPII class of 2021). She is a proud hockey and lacrosse mom, as well as a horse-girl mom, who enjoys traveling and watching her children grow in their education and outside endeavors!
Our Faculty Members
About Ms. Holton
About Mrs. Terry DeFoor
It was a wonderful and blessed gift from God, Mrs. DeFoor believes she was given, when led to St. John Paul II Catholic School! Having grown up in a home where both parents were educators, Mrs. DeFoor decided at a very young age that she wanted to be a kindergarten teacher. She has been fortunate to have taught kindergarten for most of her thirty-plus years in the profession that she loves! Mrs. DeFoor’s teaching experiences have included both public and private education. As an adjunct professor of education for Flagler College in Florida, Mrs. DeFoor additionally had the opportunity of instructing aspiring teachers in the areas of informational technology and children’s literature.
Mrs. DeFoor holds a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from SUNY Cortland as well as a master’s degree in educational media from Nova Southeastern University.
Mrs. DeFoor lives in Pinehurst and is a member of St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Southern Pines. She is the proud mother of three adult children and grandmother of two.
Ms. Magdalena Forero-Posada
Pre K–3 Spanish & 4th Grade Assistant
About Ms. Magdalena Forero-Posada
“Be brave. Take risk. Nothing can substitute experience.“ - Paulo Coehlo
About Ms. Leeann Felicetta
Mrs. Felicetta considers herself beyond blessed to share her love of Christ and her passion for literacy with her students in a Catholic school setting for the last 25 years. Her goal as an educator is to develop a community of lifelong learners through self-motivation, self-regulation, cooperation, prayer, and a positive attitude while maintaining a high level of expectation from all students.
In addition to teaching language arts and religion, Mrs. Felicetta is the team leader for grades 3 through 5, is a member of the school leadership team and school improvement team, and represents the school in the Moore County Reading Association. She is an active member and regular Adorer at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Southern Pines.
Mrs. Felicetta resides in Whispering Pines with her husband, Frank, and her daughter, Sofia (SJPII class of 2016). She enjoys spending time with her grandson, Tommy, and her adult daughter, Cristina, reading, cooking, and crocheting.
Mrs. Felicetta attended Rutgers University on a full academic scholarship as a Governor’s Teaching Scholar and graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a B.A. in psychology.
About Ms. Evelyn Ooka
Evelyn Ooka’s path has always been in education. It all started when she received her bachelor of arts degree in elementary education from the University of Guam on the U.S. territory of Guam, where she was born and raised. She moved to Saipan in the commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands where she continued her teaching career. After many years in the classroom, she yearned to learn more which led her to attend graduate school at San Jose State University in California, earning a masters degree in instructional technology. Upon her return to Saipan, she resumed her work in the public school system as a vice principal and eventually principal. She retired from public service but never left the field. After retiring, she worked as a program specialist for the non-profit Pacific Resources for Education and Learning (PREL), where she trained and mentored teachers on early literacy and reading comprehension.
Although working with the teachers was a rewarding experience, Evelyn’s heart never left the classroom. After many years as a school administrator and trainer, she chose to go back to the classroom teaching third grade in Guam’s Catholic schools. However, being around young students made her miss her 14 grandchildren who were living in the states. Although she visited them during the summers, she wanted to see them more often.
As a result, Evelyn made the bittersweet decision to leave her home island to be closer to her children and grandchildren. Evelyn has three daughters living in North Carolina (Cary, Linden, and Fayetteville) and a son who lives in Blythewood, South Carolina. She has started a new chapter in her life settling in Southern Pines where she feels right at home. Now she is a hop, skip, and a jump away from her children and 14 grandchildren, making it easier to visit.
About Ms. Tara Perpignan
In the past, Miss Perpignan has taught students all over the world. She began her teaching journey in Otavalo, Ecuador. There, she taught English as a second language. Soon after, Miss Perpignan taught ESL in Accra, Ghana. Previously, she has taught special education in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and second grade and kindergarten in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Miss Perpignan is new to the region and is looking forward to a spending time with her dog and fiance outside, in God’s nature.
Miss Perpignan is excited to be a part of a school family that has the opportunity to come together in prayer each day. It is a blessing that God has given her the beautiful vocation of teacher. She truly believes that the SJP2 has many opportunities to grow each child in his/her faith.
About Ms. Jan Thomas
Miss Thomas believes that all children want to learn, especially when parents and teachers work together as a team. She is convinced that children learn better when they are actively engaged, so her classroom is centered on hands-on stations and learning opportunities. She believes that all children can learn and should be challenged to the best of their abilities and that all children have gifts and talents that should be embraced and nurtured.
About Mr. Connor Edgington
About Ms. Jessica Foley
Mrs. Foley currently resides in Whispering Pines with her husband, Patrick, their one-year-old son, Thomas, and their dog, Scout. In November, they’ll be welcoming a baby girl to the family. Both Jessica and Patrick grew up in the Bay Area, more specifically, the garlic capital of the world, Gilroy, California. However, Patrick’s career in the military has led them to places near and far: Missouri, South Korea, Colorado, and now, North Carolina.
After spending 13 years in Catholic education as a student, Mrs. Foley continued her education with the Jesuits at the University of San Francisco. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English and a minor in criminal justice in 2009. Her original plans of attending law school were overturned when she realized in her senior year of college that her true passion was in education. She then earned her teaching credential from Santa Clara University (more Catholic education!).
About Mrs. Lori Haley
About Ms. Barb Lamblin
Mrs. Lamblin believes teaching in a Catholic school is a gift from God and that we are entrusted with the responsibility of teaching as well as witnessing to our faith. The reward for Mrs. Lamblin is knowing she can have an impact on a student’s faith journey and in some way, help pave the path to salvation during the time she spends with students and faculty.
Mrs. Lamblin has taught at SJPII since 2008, currently serving as the resource director and 6th grade English language arts teacher. Holding NC teaching certifications in K-12 special education and 6-9 ELA, Mrs. Lamblin earned a BA in communications and English from La Salle University; an M.Ed. in special education (UVA) and M.S.Ed. with an emphasis in reading (USC). In the past, she also taught grades 6-8 religion, serving as the confirmation coordinator, and ran around the community as the cross-country Coach for 8 years. Mrs. Lamblin’s lens on learning starts with listening, a skill which must be taught and refined with urgency in our very busy world where young people are constantly being told what to do. She believes teachers must learn with students, so ultimately, we will make the world better for ourselves and the larger community.
Striving for excellence in our Catholic schools requires living the cardinal virtues. Prudence allows her to make the best choices for how to present content to reach all learners; fortitude mandates she witness to the faith each day, despite the barrage of secular trends. Justice allows her to always do right for students, even if it is not popular. Temperance keeps her contained when she is rattled by pressures from parents, peers, and herself.
Her favorite word in the English language is “mom.” Two of her four children graduated from SJPII - John (2011) and Sam (2015). Vera is currently a 6th grader, and her oldest, Grace, most recently taught at a Catholic school in Washington, DC. Both Mrs. Lamblin and her husband, David, are proud veterans of the U.S. Army.
About Ms. Nancy Ahlfeld
The joy children experience in discovering new ideas with their curious minds is what encouraged Mrs. Ahlfeld to become a teacher. Her love for young children brought her out of retirement in 2014 to work as a teacher aide in kindergarten at St. John Paul II. Previously, Mrs. Ahlfeld taught preschool and kindergarten through fourth grade in five states over many, many years.
The 2018-2019 school year will be Mrs. Ahlfeld’s fifth year working with Mrs. DeFoor in the kindergarten classroom. The role of a teacher aide is to try to stay two steps ahead of the teacher, always knowing what needs to be done next. Mrs. Ahlfeld helps with classroom management and various tasks to make sure the day runs smoothly for the five and six year old children. She also plans a special art project every week and introduces an estimation jar during the last half of the year.
Mrs. Ahlfeld is a Stephen Minister and a co-leader of the Prayer Shawl Ministry, where she is a member of Brownson Memorial Presbyterian Church in Southern Pines. She is also a “grand rocker” at Moore Regional Hospital, where she rocks newborn babies. Mrs. Ahlfeld has been married to her husband Gary for more than fifty years and they reside in Pinehurst. They have two adult children and three grandchildren. Mrs. Ahlfeld relaxes by reading, knitting, and walking.
Mrs. Ahlfeld earned a bachelors degree in elementary education and a masters degree in early childhood education from Eastern Michigan University.
Ms. Jen Alexander
About Ms. Jen Alexander
About Ms. Meredith Richard
Stop by our second grade classroom and you will find teaching assistant Meredith Richard helping our second graders with their reading, writing, and math, or perhaps tying shoes or checking homework folders or turning the jump rope on the playground. Before joining our staff in 2016, Mrs. Richard was a stay-at-home mom to her five children, four of whom graduated from SJP2 and one who is currently a fifth grade student. Mrs. Richard volunteered in the school library for several years before joining our staff in 2016 and she continues to share her love of reading with her students.
Ms. Anne Spohn
About Ms. Anne Spohn
Mrs. Spohn is a native New Yorker who married a West Point graduate and embarked on the biggest journey of her life. Together, they traveled through three continents, over 30 years, and have been married for 46 years. One of their incredible destinations was Italy, about 30 miles from Padua, and the church of St. Anthony. During their three and a half years in Italy, Anne took her parents to Rome, and they happened to arrive at the Vatican just in time to see Pope John Paul II. Their last military assignment was in Japan, and her husband retired in 2001. Anne and her husband settled in Southern Pines. They have spent all of their adult lives serving God and the country.
Anne has one child, Jaymie, one grandchild (now 18 years old), and a son-in-law, who live in San Antonio, TX. Anne and her daughter produced a cookbook as a major fundraiser for the old school.
In addition, Anne is a registered member of St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church and parish. This school is a part of that parish and she wants to help her church in any and every way possible. The children of this school deserve love and attention even when the school day ends. The Aftercare program is designed to provide that for them until they return safely home.
In times of great stress, need, and healing, Anne prays to the Infant of Prague. She stops her busy day and regularly devotes nine hours to the Novena.
Psalms 116:7: God has been good to me.
About Ms. Kendra Tranel
Mrs. Tranel resides in Whispering Pines with her husband Dan, sons Keaton (SJPII alumni class of 2015), Broderick (SJPII class of 2019), and Taylon (SJPII class of 2022), and daughter Nyah (SJPII class of 2024). Outside of school, Mrs. Tranel’s family keeps her very busy with a variety of sports and activities, including football, soccer, swimming, and music.
Before making their move to North Carolina, Mrs. Tranel and her family made their home in Iowa. Mrs. Tranel graduated from Iowa State University with a bachelor's degree in political science and a minor in criminal justice. Mrs. Tranel also holds a certificate in paralegal studies and worked for many years as a paralegal in Iowa before moving to the Sandhills and seizing the opportunity to spend more time with her family.