Love. Respect. Integrity. Peace. Excellence.

12 Ascot Place, Ithaca, NY 14850   |   (607) 266.0788

Matt Muskin


Matt works in the pricing group in Corning Incorporated’s Environmental Technologies business. He studied English Literature at Colgate University and has an MBA from the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University. For most of his adult life, Matt has enjoyed working at the intersection of strategy, education, and administration. After serving as the VP of Colgate’s student government, he worked in antitrust at the US Department of Justice and in fundraising at Harvard. Matt and his wife Catherine are grateful for the experiences their children had at IMS. He is eager to give back to the community that has given his family so much.

Samantha Elebiary

Vice President

Samantha has been at Ithaca College since 2017 when she joined the Residential Life team as a Residence Director. She then served as the BOLD Program Director for almost five years, offering professional and leadership development to women students on campus. Sam joined the Career Center team in June of 2023 as the Associate Director of Career Engagement and Education. Sam’s skillset includes strong organizational and administrative skills, and extensive programming experience.

Prior to Ithaca College, Sam received her Master of Science in Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration from Canisius University. She has worked with students in some capacity for ten years now and is passionate about serving under-resourced and underrepresented student populations. She is a proud first-generation college student herself, so she values the importance of a strong education. 

Sam is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer – she served in Ghana as a teacher from 2012-2014. She lives in Ithaca with her family and is involved in the local community. She has sat on the grants committee of the Ithaca Public Education Initiative (IPEI) for three years and joined their board in September 2023. She helped organize the teacher appreciation week at IMS this past May and hopes to deepen her commitment to the school, and support the work of the incredible teachers and staff of IMS. Sam and her partner Yehia are the parents of a current IMS toddler who is thriving at the school. In her free time, Sam enjoys hiking, going to festivals, listening to live music, and traveling with her family. 

Jennifer Walsh-Emond


Jennifer is a research associate at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology where she studies the ecology, behavior, and conservation of birds. Through this role, she has been dedicated to combining science, education, outreach, and public engagement. Jen is committed to service roles both in her professional and personal circles and is at the end of her tenure as an elected councilor for the American Ornithological Society, where she has been working collaboratively to guide decisions on annual budgets and strategic planning initiatives for the organization. Jen and her husband Marc have a son who attends IMS and an older son who has recently graduated from the primary classroom. She is beyond grateful for her family’s Montessori experience and is excited to give back and serve the IMS community.

Andy Adams


 Treasurer of the Ithaca Montessori School Board of Trustees

Alison Gelsleichter

Board Member

Alison is an intellectual property attorney and for the past twelve years has focused her practice on patent infringement litigation.  She studied chemistry at King’s College and has an M.S. in natural resources policy from the State University of New York and a J.D. from Syracuse University College of Law. Alison and her husband Eric are both natives of Northeastern Pennsylvania, and after spending several years working in Washington, DC and Syracuse they moved with their children to Ithaca and joined the IMS community in 2020. They have a son who is currently in the Maple Room and two older daughters who previously attended IMS in the Willow, Elm, and Pine Rooms.  In her spare time, Alison and her family can be found running, hiking, camping, and enjoying all the beautiful scenery and activities that Ithaca and Central New York have to offer.

Heather Peluso

Staff Representative

Heather is the lead guide in the Willow Room. Heather, a native of Buffalo NY, came to Ithaca after graduating from SUNY Cortland with a B.A. in History.  Heather has been caring for children in centers, home based care and preschool for 19 years.  Heather received her Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential in 2006 and is now a fully certified Montessori Infant and Toddler teacher.  She lives with her husband Josh, two daughters, Sydnie and Reese, and a goofy Golden Retriever Codder.

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