Board of Directors

While Merit Academy was inspired and is powered by parents and community, a small handful of people have put thousands of hours and personal resources into the development and launch of our great school.

This is an introduction to the Founding Board, in alphabetical order.

They have since transitioned to the Merit Academy Board of Directors.


John Dill is a retired Lt. Colonel from the United States Army. He continues in leadership roles with the United States Armed Services as a civilian. He has served on local non-profit boards,  responsible for budgets, policy generation, and policy implementation. He and his wife have twin girls, joyfully attending Merit Academy.


Katie Illingworth is a mother of five beautiful children. As a special needs mom to a son with autism, Katie understands the many educational challenges that special needs parents face. In her professional life, Katie is an acquisitions attorney for the U.S. Space Force. She is the product of a classical education, including her BA in Letters with a concentration in Classics, French, and Latin, and her JD. 


Jason Ledlie is a licensed therapist in Woodland Park. He has previously served as an elected member of the board of trustees of a Title 1 school district. He served two consecutive terms, totaling eight years. Jason and his wife are parents to five children, and are very enthusiastic Merit Academy Bears!


Nicole Waggoner is an entrepreneur and successful local business owner with flourishing companies in Florida and Colorado. She is experienced in both the marketing and financial management of business. She and her husband have three boys - very proud Merit Academy Bears (well, the youngest is not quite ready for Kindergarten, yet!)

We are currently rounding out our Board of Directors. We will hold parent elections for these final positions. Please contact us for more information.

The Board will establish and oversee the mission, values, goals, and fiscal well-being of MA. The MA Dean of School and  Director of Development, with the advice and consent of the Board, will be responsible for staffing, programing management, and decisions related to internal systems, so long as the affairs of the School are exercised under the Board’s ultimate jurisdiction.