Board of Directors
Who We Are
Our board of directors is comprised of local leaders, engaged citizens and alumni. We are always open to talking with anyone interested in serving to help us to further our vision.
We welcome support on our several work groups that focus on facilities, fundraising, grant writing leadership and marketing/public relations.
President - John Zacharias
Vice President - Cynthia Downing
Secretary - Janis King
Treasurer - Roberta Dean
Town Council Representative
Fletcher Fosque, Mayor
Meet Our Team
Roberta Dean is a first-time board member, beginning a term in January 2017. She is a retired art teacher who divides her time between creating works of art on silk and other textiles, and being “Bebe” to her four grandchildren. Roberta is a graduate of Onancock High School, Class of 1966, and got involved with the Friends of Onancock School because she believes that having community space and studios for a variety of people will support its mission to strengthen the cultural vitality of the Eastern shore’s diverse population.
Cynthia Serini Downing, a graduate of Onancock High School, has been involved with the Friends of Onancock School project since its beginning in 2007. She has served in several capacities including member of the Board, President of Board, and as an Ex Officio Board member. The dedication to the success of this project is generated by a deep pride of being an alumni of this very special place. Cyndi feels there is much history and heritage that is important to preserve for future generations of those who call the Eastern Shore home.
Sarah Hoffman, raised in Accomack County, lives in Onancock with husband, Matthew Hoffman and two sons, Caiden and Mason. A graduate of James Madison University, Sarah practices as a licensed occupational therapy assistant. The Onancock School is a perfect location for uniting our community of all backgrounds and all stages of life. Sarah is excited to bring new life into her family’s favorite small town for her children and generations to come.
Janis King is a first-time board member, beginning her term in March 2019. Born on the ESVA, the Radford University graduate moved to Onancock in 2017. The mother of four and grandmother of seven has taught elementary school art and Pre-First in Jacksonville, FL. Janis has been a figurative sculptor and painter for over two decades. A member of ESVA Artisan Guild, ES Art League and ESVA Historical Society, she believes the preservation of HOS as a community center is integral to the heritage and vitality of Onancock.
Serving for the second time as a member the Board of HOS, Haydon Rochester, Jr. is a semi-retired technical writer who currently is chair of the Facilities Committee. He was attracted to the HOS project because of the clear need to preserve public space for the citizens of Onancock and surrounding areas. Although managing a Community and Cultural Center on a shoestring is a challenge, he finds it inspiring to see how many people use and enjoy HOS for an astonishing variety of activities in the arts, music, athletics, education, and personal development.
David H. Turner designs and casts wildlife sculptures in bronze. He and his father own Turner Sculpture on Lankford Highway in Melfa. To date they have created more than 300 different limited edition bronzes and more than 50 large public commissions. Their work is a reflection of their deep appreciation and understanding of nature. David is an alumni of Onancock High School.
Rick Turner was born and raised in the suburbs of Philadelphia. He holds a Ph.D. from Temple University. He spent his entire career at Rider University, where he held the rank of full professor in the Department of Communications. He has owned a home in Onancock since 2001 and moved to the Eastern Shore when he retired in 2010. He is involved with the Historic Onancock School, the Eastern Shore Historical Society, the Eastern Shore Yacht and Country Club, the Christian Men’s Association, the Francis Makemie Society, and is a member of the session at the Naomi Makemie Presbyterian Church.
John Zacharias is from Lewes, Delaware where he was owner and president of Zacharias Construction Co. Inc. John attended Chowan College and the University of Delaware, majoring in art and theater. He taught drawing and painting at University of Delaware 2 year program and served as member of Sussex County Art Council board. John also worked as lighting designer and head electrician for national and local musical acts. John currently owns Zartfarm, a 50 acre sculpture park with 2,400 sq ft. gallery and studio space. He is a member of Artisans Guild of Eastern Shore and the ES Art League. John and his wife Darlene reside in Onancock.