Tim Hennessy, President
Tim Hennessy has a long history of involvement with Catholic education and organizations serving low-income, vulnerable populations. After graduating from Jesuit High School in Portland, OR, and receiving his Bachelor’s degree from Gonzaga University, he lived and worked in Boston, MA where he taught at an inner-city school and later worked in a sheltered-workshop for young adults with developmental disabilities. After four years, Hennessy returned to his hometown of Portland where he worked in the hi-tech industry for nearly 22 years. In 2003, he joined De La Salle North Catholic, helping move the organization to a position of financial stability. Departing to become an Associate Director and Major Gifts Officer at the University of Portland from 2008–2011, Hennessy then became the Executive Director of CASA for Children (Court Appointed Special Advocates) where he helped this 35 year old organization increase its public visibility and thus increased revenues and the volunteer base. He was presented with the opportunity to return to De La Salle North Catholic and was enthusiastic to help lead this Lasallian educational institution and the unique community of families and students at De La Salle North Catholic. Tim Hennessy accepted the position of President of De La Salle North Catholic High School, effective June 9, 2014.
Tim Joy, Principal
Tim Joy was born into a Catholic family in southeast Portland where he attended Holy Family Catholic Parish School and was in the sixth graduating class of La Salle High School. His college career includes stints at St. Mary’s College of California, Portland State University, and University of Portland. A lifelong Lasallian Catholic educator, Tim Joy began his career in 1983 at La Salle High School where he was a teacher, coach, Campus Minister, and English Department Chair. Additionally he served as Associate Director of the National Science Foundation curriculum program conducted in Portland. Joy was part of the planning committee to create De La Salle North Catholic High School and joined the staff in fall of 2002 as Vice Principal of Academics. He was appointed Principal in 2010. Tim and his wife Kim are members of Christ the King Catholic Parish in Milwaukie where their children attended grade school before entering and graduating from La Salle High School and then going off to college. Currently, their five grandchildren keep them smiling and agile.
Ashleigh de Villiers, Director of Development
Raised in Portland, Ashleigh is a Lincoln High School graduate. She received her bachelor’s degree in history from Northwestern University. Ashleigh brings more than fifteen years of experience in management and resource development for educational and social change organizations, both locally and internationally. Ashleigh started her career in Cape Town, South Africa in 2000 as Project Manager of the Amy Biehl Foundation Trust. Overseeing a staff of 90 employees, Ashleigh led the Trust’s efforts to expand their programs to two additional cities in South Africa. Transitioning to the role of Managing Director and Trustee of the organization, Ashleigh was instrumental in stabilizing the Trust after the passing of one of its founders. Ashleigh then focused her efforts in the area of development as a consultant for the Treatment Action Campaign, South Africa’s largest HIV/AIDS advocacy organization, where she established their first Development Department. Ashleigh moved back to Portland in 2007. After serving as a grant writing consultant for multiple local organizations, Ashleigh found a home at De La Salle North Catholic High School. Since 2014, Ashleigh has served as Manager of Foundation Relations at the school, where she was successful in growing the school’s grant portfolio by 49% and proved an integral member of the school community. She was hired as Director of Development in July of 2016.
Walt Ghant, Executive Director of the Corporate Work Study Program
Walt Ghant was raised in Portland, where he attended Madison High School and served honorably in the United States Air Force. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Religion from Warner Pacific College, Master’s degrees from Howard University, George Mason University, and James Madison University, respectively. Ghant brings more than 20 years of nonprofit management, higher education, and faith-based organization experience. Ghant began his career in Washington, DC in 1991 as the Cross-Cultural Program Coordinator for the Servant Leadership School. He then became the Director of Community Programs for the nonprofit housing organization, Jubilee Enterprises, of Greater Washington, DC. While also serving as a full-time Senior Pastor in 2002, Walt transitioned into higher education as a Human Resources Recruitment Specialist and Associate Director of Community Service Learning at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Walt moved back to Portland in November of 2016 to be closer to family and friends as an “empty nester.” Walt has always been drawn to service since his college days at Warner Pacific working to support underrepresented and marginalized persons in the Portland area. The vision of De La Salle North Catholic is consistent with Walt’s personal life philosophy, which is “To make a difference in the world through engaged and informed lifelong learning, to do less harm to others and the environment, and to be an agent of change through active public service.”
Sarah Maher, Director of Lasallian Youth Ministry
Sarah was raised in White Bear Lake, Minnesota and received her bachelor’s degree in Theology and Music from Saint Mary’s University, a Lasallian University, in Winona, Minnesota. From there, she joined the Lasallian Volunteer program and worked as a Campus Minister at Bishop Loughlin Memorial High School in Brooklyn, New York. Desiring more theological understanding, she attended Villanova University where she studied Theology while working in the Office of Campus Ministry with the Augustinians. Sarah brought 5 years of ministerial experience with her to Portland, Oregon in 2012 where she joined our Lasallian community and has loved introducing our students to opportunities to expand their faith lives through means of service and prayer. Sarah has been the Director of Lasallian Youth Ministry at DLSNC since the fall of 2012. During her time here, she has run the office of LYM which handles Campus Ministry, Service Learning, and Student Activities. She has also taught in the Theology department.
Olimpia Trusty - Sojka, Director of Finance
Olimpia was born and raised in Poland and moved to Missoula, MT in 2001 as a young mom and symphony violinist where she graduated from the University of Montana with a Business degree in Accounting. Olimpia then moved to Portland and took an accounting position with Wieden+Kennedy and a few years later moved on to a software corporation, gaining experience with international accounting. At that point she decided to further her education and a year later graduated with a Master's in Financial Analysis from Portland State University. In the corporate world Olimpia felt she was missing something she had found in non-profit accounting – which was working for a greater purpose. After Albertina Kerr Centers, where she held another accounting role, Olimpia moved on to St. Vincent de Paul as a Business Manager for a few years. Olimpia has happily held the Finance Director position at De La Salle North Catholic High School since then.
Ni’Cole Sims, Director of Admissions
Born and raised in Portland, Ni’Cole attended Marshall High School. Her strong dedication and passion for the field of education was developed while an undergraduate student at Portland State University (PSU) where she earned not just one but four separate bachelor degrees. After completing her advanced degree in Educational Leadership and Policy at PSU, Ni'Cole went on to work in the office of admissions at Washington State University Vancouver as an Admissions Counselor. She later transitioned to Pacific University as the Assistant Director of Graduate and Professional Admissions where she led the School of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training admissions process. To cultivate her dedication and passion for social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion, Ni’Cole joined Northwest Regional Education Service District (NWRESD) as the Regional Achievement Collaborative Coordinator. In this role, she worked across the P-20 education spectrum and built partnerships to improve the educational opportunities, for all learners, across 20 school districts. Most recently, she has been supporting a Department of Education grant— the Opening Doors Project through Portland Community College which increases college and career opportunities for young women at Oak Creek, providing support pre and post release that empowers them to reach their goals. Ni’Cole was hired as the Director of Admissions in May of 2017. She is excited to join the De La Salle North Catholic High School community and looks forward to supporting students and their families.