Board Of Directors

Board Members

The board member of North Carolina Victual Academy (NCVA) are committed to empowering our school community and providing students with the high-quality learning experiences.

Sara W. C. Struhs | Executive Director

Sara Struhs has an extensive history working education and government. She most recently worked as a private contractor for the Foundation for Excellence in Education as the director of professional development. In 2002, Sara served under Governor Jeb Bush in various capacities. She was senior staff, director of professional development in the executive office of the governor, the executive director of the gubernatorial fellows program, and the transition team leader and legacy project lead. She served as the special advisor to the secretary of education in the Florida Department of Education from 2001–2002.

Brenda Robertson | Chairman of the Board

Brenda Robertson is a veteran teacher with 30 plus years in public school education. She has worked as a classroom teacher in Goldsboro City Schools, Wayne County, Onslow County, and currently works for Duplin County. Earning her BS in education and master’s degree in middle school from East Carolina, she also has an agricultural education certification from North Carolina State University. Brenda is a member of Alpha Delta Kappa, which is an international honorary organization for women educators. She is also a member of the Camp Lejeune Staff Wives Club.

Walter Martin

Walter Martin is a technology professional with more than 39 years of experience, including system operations, analysis, design, programming/coding, and application development. Presently, he is a systems analyst and senior manager at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, previously a senior applications developer at SAS Institute. Walter is a proud graduate of the Rochester Institute of Technology where he earned a master’s degree in computer science, and Clemson University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in chemistry. He is a talented musician performing in various ensembles including the Duke University Wind Symphony and advocates for musicianship as a founder, president, and member of the North Carolina Saxophone Ensemble.

Dr. Steven Peters | Treasurer 

Dr. Steven Peters is director of psychology at Cherry Hospital in Goldsboro, North Carolina, a psychiatric hospital serving 38 counties. He is active on the executive leadership team developing strategic goals, policy development, and hospital administration. Steven is a forensic examiner for patients adjudicated as Incapable to Proceed and director of the hospital’s Assaulted Staff Action Program. In addition to working for Cherry Hospital, he is associate professor of clinical medicine at Medical University of the Americas, and assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at Saba University School of Medicine.

Steven is a proud graduate of Carson-Newman College, graduating Cum Laude with Honors in psychology. He has a Master of Arts from Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and a Doctor of Psychology from Illinois School of Professional Psychology, Chicago, Illinois.

He has been awarded the Psi Chi Service Award, Outstanding Student of Psychology, Psi Chi Award for Excellence in Psychological Research, YSN Lake County Service Award, and the Mental Health Association of Wayne County President’s Award.

Mark Fleming | Secretary 

Mark Fleming is goal oriented and has a focus on leadership and innovation. Mark brings years of experience to the board. Previously he was the executive director for the Wake Forest Chamber of Commerce, vice president for North Carolina FreeEnterprise Foundation, and is currently president of Conservatives for Clean Energy. He has a Master of Business Administration from Campbell University, a Bachelor of Business Administration from Campbell University, and the Institute for Organizational Management, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Southeast Region.

Chris Farrell

Mr. Farrell is an extremely effective Tech Marketer- specializing in competitive positioning, product marketing, content development, pipeline generation, and technical marketing. With proven success at companies of all sizes, including start-ups from 5 to 300 employees and public companies ranging from $150M – $60B annual revenues. He specializes in building the right team for the situation, whether operating as a team of 1 or building processes for scaling to meet business growth.

Mr. Farrell is the Vice President of Value Services for IBM. He has a BSE, in Electrical Engineering, from Duke University and an MBA, in Entrepreneurship/Entrepreneurial Studies, from Duke University.

Natalie Wright

Natalie is a Charlotte-based financial services professional. Natalie began her career in finance at MetLife in 2004. and is currently the Vice President. Head of Compensation Operations at Brighthouse Financial. Natalie has led the transformation of advisor compensation from numerous legacy systems to a new TPA platform. She also helped to establish Transition Services Agreements during Brighthouse Financial’s 2017 spinoff from MetLife. Natalie has held various leadership roles at both companies. with a focus on expense management. strategic planning, operations. and vendor management. She holds a bachelor’s degree in management information systems from the Florida State University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Central Florida. After enjoying close to a decade with MetLife in her hometown of New York City, Natalie now resides in North Carolina with her husband and daughter.