Pingry students in all three divisions paused on January 12 and 13 to honor Dr. King's memory.
Meet Our Faculty
Before Pingry, Mr. Facciani worked as an actor and founder of a theater company. He also spent time in advertising and financial sales. He credits this variety of experience with helping him to realize his passion for education, and a career focused on others.
Widely involved in school life, he is the Head Coach of Varsity and Middle School Wrestling, the Middle School history coordinator, Director of Summer Academics, and the Co-Director of the Pingry SAT/ACT Program.
Mrs. Watts, Grade 1 Teacher, has returned from a two-year sabbatical in Abu Dhabi, during which she taught Kindergarten to Emiratis—with limited or no English—at Emirates National School. She also served on academic and newsletter committees at the school, and took Arabic language and calligraphy classes. Prior to her sabbatical, she had been a Kindergarten teacher at Pingry from 2006-2013, and before that, Mrs. Watts taught at Kent Place and The Sundance School.
Raised in Heilongjiang province of China, Weiwei Yu enjoyed an enriched life with loving family and friends. Four years of studying Chinese language and literature at Naikai University in China made her feel proud about being Chinese and humbled by the vast ocean of knowledge. After working for three years at Liaoning TV station, Ms. Yu and her husband decided to move to the U.S. to pursue graduate studies. While studying at Marquette University, she worked as a teaching assistant and volunteered to teach Chinese, which helped her fully realize her passion for education. She decided to be a full-time Chinese teacher after graduation.
Ms. Marsh Abbott was a starter on Princeton University's varsity soccer team her first two years, and a four-year starter on their varsity lacrosse team, serving as captain of the team her senior year. Among many honors, she was a second team All-American her sophomore year, a first team All-American her junior and senior years, and "Ivy League Player of the Year" her senior year. She has taught and coached at three other independent schools (Episcopal High School, The Hill School, and Suffield Academy), serving as head coach of one or both of varsity soccer and varsity lacrosse.
Steve Benoit taught French for two years at the University of Texas at Austin, four years at St. Timothy's-Hale School in Raleigh, and 16 years at Solebury School in New Hope, Pennsylvania. At Solebury School, he also held various administrative positions: Director of Studies, Director of Advising, World Languages Department Chair, Diversity Coordinator, and Community Service Coordinator. Of Pingry, Mr. Benoit says, "The intellectual and academic curiosity is amazing among our students and faculty members alike. I love coming to work every day to engage with everyone here." Along with his duties in the classroom, Mr. Benoit is the Independent Senior Project Coordinator and Affinity Group Advisor. He is also a writer whose story "Many Strands, One Thread" appears in the anthology One Teacher in Ten in the New Millennium (August 2015)—to illustrate the experience of being an out teacher or administrator, the book's editor, Kevin Jennings, gathered stories from LGBT educators from across the country and world.
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