A Letter From the Chairman of the Board of Directors
May 20, 2013
Dear PCA Parents,
It gives me great pleasure to announce that Dr. John
Engstrom has been selected to become the next Head of School at Portsmouth
Christian Academy. Dr. Engstrom is
currently serving as the Head of School at the Seoul Foreign School in Seoul,
Korea and will complete his contract there after the 2013-14 school year. He
will assume his new responsibilities here on August 1, 2014. Dennis Runey has accepted the Board’s request
to remain as Head of School for another year.
I have included Dr. Engstrom’s biographical sketch below, as
well as a link to an introductory video made by him and his lovely wife, Alice,
that shows their lighter side.
I could not be more pleased that God has called John
Engstrom to our school and that he has heard and responded to that calling. He possesses a wealth of experience, is wise
and compassionate, has a great vision for PCA, and desires to take the school
to new levels of greatness.
We are in the process of preparing a transition plan to be
presented to the Board of Directors and Dr. Engstrom. Our mutual goal is for a seamless transfer of
responsibilities, and to that end, John and Dennis will be in frequent contact
throughout the next school year. We are
also hoping that he and Alice will be back in this area at least once before
August 1, 2014. If so, we intend to host
a reception where you will have an opportunity to meet and welcome them.
The stability of another year with the same leadership team,
and Dr. Engstrom’s commitment to at least five years at PCA, assures the school
community of consistency and continuity in the years to come. I look forward with great anticipation to the
Chairman of the Board of Directors
John Engstrom was born and raised in the Midwest of the
United States and graduated with a BS in Chemistry from Wheaton College in
Illinois. He was trained as a chemistry teacher and coach and after graduation,
became a teacher and coach at The Stony Brook School in Stony Brook, NY. In 1973, John earned a Master’s Degree in
Liberal Studies and in 1980 was awarded a Master’s Degree in Chemistry, both
from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. While on leave from Stony Brook, the family
lived and worked in Zweibrucken, Germany and Kodaikanal, India.
In 1989, John completed his doctorate at Columbia University
in Science Education and was appointed the Head of School at The American
School in Switzerland (TASIS), where he served for four years. In 1994, he
became the President of Minnehaha Academy, a Christian day school of 1200
students in Minneapolis, Minnesota. During his years at Minnehaha Academy, the school raised $20,000,000 for
various capital projects designed to upgrade and expand its facilities. Finally in 2009, he was appointed Head of
School at Seoul Foreign School in Seoul, South Korea.
John has been committed to teaching throughout his career,
completing several decades of classroom teaching before coming to Seoul Foreign
School. He has been a leader in
improving technology in the classroom so as to more actively engage students in
their learning. John’s other interests include the integration of Christian
Faith and initiating a well-functioning Development Office. John and his wife
Alice have three adult children living in Chattanooga, Tennessee; Seoul, Korea
and Groton, Massachusetts.
Video Trailer from the Engstroms