Jon Myers is not new to Christian education. But the 48-year-old Clarkston resident is new to .
Myers took over as principal of the Catholic school on July 1, replacing Sister Karen Hawver who retired after 20 years at the helm.
“I’m excited for the challenge,” said Myers, who most recently served as assistant principal at St. Joseph School in Lake Orion. “Holy Family has a great reputation for academics and being a faith-based school. I’m especially excited to get to know the students and families more closely.”
A graduate of , Myers earned his bachelor’s degree in education from Michigan State University. After college, he worked as a public school teacher in Arizona. It was while he was pursuing his master’s degree in educational leadership at Northern Arizona University that he started thinking about working in the Catholic school system.
“It’s great to be able to share liturgies like Mass with the students and talk openly and freely about your own faith,” he said.
A lifelong Catholic, Myers worked as a principal at St. Benedict in Waterford before accepting the post at St. Joseph, where he is a member.
As head of Holy Family, he oversees two schools – the north campus in Rochester for students in the Young 5s program through third grade and the south campus in Rochester Hills for grades fourth through eighth.
Supported by five local parishes, there are about 1,000 students between the two schools. Myers also will supervise 100 faculty and staff members and spent the summer getting to know them.
While he didn't forsee many changes upcoming in his first year, Myers said he eventually would like to explore new technologies for the classrooms such as iPads and Smart Boards.
Myers and his wife, Kimberly, have two children. While he does not have a lot of free time, he enjoys spending time with his family and going to his children’s sporting events.
Retired leader Hawver knows Myers through the Archdiocese of Detroit and said he’s wonderful for the job.
“The school is right for him and it’s a great time for him to be taking over the school,” she said.
An educator for 46 years, it was the right time for her to retire, she said.
“The school’s in great shape. It was a good time for me to move on. The school is very strong, very full. I think it was time for someone else to take direction over the school.”
During her career at Holy Family, the highlight, Hawver said, was opening the South Campus in 2001. She will miss the families, the teachers, the children and the wonderful faculty and staff, she added.
Hawver, who lives at the Sterling Heights Catholic Seminary, will spend the next year on sabbatical and is not sure what she will do after that but intends to enjoy reading and music, she said.
To Myers, what makes Holy Family special is the infusion of faith in the curriculum, the family atmosphere and the high degree of parental involvement.
“I think parents are happy to know that their kids are in an environment where we’re sharing the same morals and values,” he