Lori McKee Walker, Executive Director and Founder
Lori Walker is passionate about the idea that learning is a natural process, and is an inherently fun process. It feels good to learn, so why are so many students bored and disengaged? Lori is the founder and Executive Director of Village Home, where learners have fun learning! Village Home is a learning community that is built on choice and autonomy for learners. Learners are all unique, with unique interests and learning styles. The Village Home model allows learners to pursue their interests as an individual while also participating in a family-friendly, community learning environment. Prior to founding Village Home in 2002, Lori was the Director of Training and Curriculum at Learning Forum, based in California, where she designed academic and life skills curriculum, trained teachers, and facilitated programs for teens. She also served as a facilitator herself at programs in the United States and abroad. Lori has over 12 years of experience teaching and training adults and children in a variety of subjects, from psychology to accounting for REITs. Lori is an engaging instructor who presents material in a way that is accessible and entertaining. She earned BA degrees, graduating summa cum laude with distinction and honors, from SMU in Business Management and Psychology, with an emphasis in child development. Lori’s two daughters provided the initial inspiration for Village Home, and her job as mom is the best job she will ever have. She lives in Beaverton with her daughters, husband, and assortment of four-legged animals.
Loriann Schmidt, Program Director and Instructor
Loriann is the homeschooling parent of James and also Danielle, her adult daughter who was also homeschooled. Loriann is the Director of the Village Home Salem campus, and the person who got the Village Home community in Salem started. Her son, James, attends Village Home where Loriann also teaches science classes. A self-proclaimed geek, Loriann has had stints in corporate America working as a business analyst, computer programmer, IT manager; in academia as a professional research assistant; and in self-employment as a real estate agent, database administrator, musician, and a host of other positions. These positions have given her exposure to a wide variety of settings and leadership opportunities. “My son and our whole family has found a warm and welcoming home here at Village Home. I appreciate the opportunity to serve you, my Village Home family.”
Amy Bay, Admissions Coordinator
Amy Bay loves organization and Village Home. When she isn’t behind talking with prospective families, she is a visual artist, art educator, and unschooling mom. She has taught art in a variety of schools, galleries, and museums in the NYC area including The Brooklyn Museum of Art, The Lower East Side Printshop, and the Henry Street Settlement Gallery. She also worked as an admissions counselor at the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC and The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In addition to her teaching and admin positions at Village, she teaches at PCC and exhibits her work nationally and internationally.
Jill Jackson, Accounts and HR Manager
Jill Jackson joined Village Home staff in Spring of 2021 after enjoying Village Home with her family for several years. Jill earned her BA in Accounting and Finance and her masters in Accounting at Indiana University Purdue University. Prior to focusing on homeschooling her family, Jill worked as an accountant and auditor for the Kroger Company. In her free time, she loves exploring, playing, and camping with her family.
Whitney Johnson, Program Director and Instructor
For the past ten years, Whitney has served in a variety of roles at Village Home including director of drama productions, instructor, and Portland campus manager. In addition to being an avid coffee lover, maker of things, and haver-of-fun, Whitney is a performer, writer, teaching artist, improviser, and lover of nature. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Musical Theater/Opera and a Master of Science in Communication Studies from Southern Illinois University. Prior to joining Village Home, Whitney worked as an Instructor and Regional Director with Trackers Earth. In her spare time, Whitney enjoys performing as an improv comedian, but her favorite role is the one she plays with the dynamo who calls her Mom.
Jessica Hammond-Brouwer, Instruction and Supply Coordinator, Salem Office Coordinator
Jessica has two kids in public schools and homeschools her daughter at Village Home. She lives in West Salem with her husband and 3 wonderful kids. When she is not at Village Home she loves spending time in the kitchen, volunteering and reading!
Kiersten Krajcar, Registrar
Kiersten Krajcar is a lifelong learner and finds great joy in connecting others with learning opportunities that develop their interests and skills. She loves serving the Village Home community as Registrar while homeschooling her own two Voyagers (Sophie and Anya) alongside her husband Tim. If she’s not working on registration requests and schedule questions you will likely find her playing disc golf or reading a book. Kiersten’s BA is in History and her MA in Interdisciplinary Studies focused on Spiritual Traditions and Ethics and living in community, so all discussion topics about humans and how they interact and care well for each other are welcome!.
Andrea Williams, Marketing and Fundraising Coordinator
Andrea and her husband began homeschooling their son in 2015 when it became evident that the traditional school path was not the right fit for their eager learner. One of the first stops in their homeschooling path was Village Home where they were beyond impressed with the inviting community and unique learning opportunities. At Village Home, their son gets to learn at his (accelerated) pace. Prior to homeschooling, Andrea had a dynamic career in advertising as a media buyer. Andrea loves adventures, going to concerts, renovating her home (or dreaming of the next renovation project), and arts and crafts.