Bethesda Academy Announces Four New Members As Board of Governors

Community Leaders from Savannah’s Business, Academic and Medical Fields Will Help Guide the School in the Coming Years.

(SAVANNAH, Ga.) Bethesda Academy recently welcomed Kimberly Ballard-Washington, Janet Ball Geriner, Peggy Gillenwater and Winston R. Pittman II to its Bethesda Union Society Board of Governors. These community leaders will serve three-year terms for the private school serving young men in grades six through 12.

Ballard-Washington is president of Savannah State University, the oldest public historically black college and university (HBCU) in the state of Georgia.  Following a national search, she was appointed by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia on May 13, 2021, after serving as the university’s interim president since July 1, 2019. Ballard-Washington has practiced law in the state of Georgia for 20 years and most recently served the University System of Georgia as associate vice chancellor for legal affairs and as the assistant secretary to the Board of Regents.

Geriner is the current chairman of the Women’s Board of Bethesda. She was employed in the banking industry for several years, managing branch offices in Atlanta and Savannah before taking a hiatus to spend time with her family. She has volunteered countless hours for Benedictine Military School where her three sons attended, United Way of the Coastal Empire and Junior League of Savannah. Geriner is a part-time employee at Northwestern Mutual.

Gillenwater is a retired pharmacist who has lived in Richmond Hill for 18 years since relocating from Chicago. She has served on the organizational committee for the Bethesda Charity Shoot for the last several years. Her efforts demonstrate a great deal of love and respect for the mission of Bethesda Academy.

Pittman is the vice president of Pittman Enterprises, which owns and operates Chatham Parkway Lexus, Chatham Parkway Toyota, Chatham Parkway Subaru, Hilton Head Lexus and Rincon Chevrolet. In addition to serving the community through a variety of endeavors, he is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Sigma Pi Phi (Boule) and 100 Black Men.

“I couldn’t be more pleased with the addition of these outstanding individuals to our board,” said Quentin Marlin, Chairman of the Bethesda-Union Society Board of Governors. “Their experience, diversity, character and willingness to help will make Bethesda the best it can be.”

Dr. Paul Pressley, director emeritus of the Ossawbaw Island Foundation and longtime head of Savannah Country Day School, will serve as the board’s vice chairman. Leslie Littlejohn, an avid supporter of Horizons SavannahHorizons National and Bethesda, will serve as the Board’s Secretary. Jim Trolinger, retired corporate president/CEO, will remain as treasurer.

Returning board members include Carol Bell, Holmes Bell, Linda Bleicken, Ellen Bolch, Yancey Bradley, Ryan Chandler, Dr. John George, Brian Harlander, Michael Hughes (president of Bethesda Academy), Diane Ingram, Kim Iocovozzi, Al Kennickell, Leslie Littlejohn, Henry H. Minis, Denny Ogden, Judith Thomas Solomon and Dr. Robert Zerbe.

“The quality of the people on the Bethesda Union Society Board of Governors ultimately benefits the students. When we add community leaders like these, everyone wins,” said Hughes.

From academic achievement and athletic opportunities to spiritual development and leadership cultivation, Bethesda Academy is dedicated to helping young men become productive citizens who are prepared for future success in college and in life.

Founded in 1740, Bethesda Academy is the oldest child-care institution in the United States. Now it is a private day school for young men in grades six through twelve and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. The 650-acre campus features a variety of athletic teams, a wildlife management and cattle program and a college preparatory curriculum. Through its “Lead The Way” initiative, students have access to exclusive integrated learning and leadership opportunities. For more information, visit or call 912.644.4376.