HEAD OF SCHOOL
BROOKE A. COYLE
In 2016, Mrs. Brooke A. Coyle became the Academy’s Head of School — the first layperson to hold this position. As a teacher, coach, and adviser, Mrs. Coyle has dedicated her professional life to mentoring and enriching students through faith-based academics. Using her passion for educational excellence, coupled with her extensive experience, Mrs. Coyle is leading OLMA into a new era of excellence for the young women of South Jersey.
Since joining OLMA, Mrs. Coyle has significantly upgraded the school’s curriculum to include additional Honors and Advanced Placement courses, as well as a one-of-a-kind empowerment and leadership program for girls called L2T. It stands for leadership, life skills, and technology and is designed to foster the core competencies for girls that today’s world expects from its leaders. This type of programming, combined with the unique environment offered at OLMA results in graduates who are informed, self-confident, service-oriented, resilient, and prepared with the competence and knowledge necessary to lead and succeed.
Under her leadership, the school has significantly upgraded its facilities and learning tools. To the delight of OLMA students and faculty, Mrs. Coyle also introduced the Mini-Mester program. These week-long courses represent experiential learning at its best. They give students the opportunity to delve deeper into subject areas that intrigue and interests them. Along the way, students learn a variety of life lessons including managing their money, navigating tours, and hikes. thinking on their feet, handling cultural and language differences, solving problems, following directions, being independent and on time, as well as how to push themselves further than they ever thought they could. Since joining OLMA the school’s enrollment has doubled in size.
Prior to joining OLMA, Mrs. Coyle worked for 19 years at St. Augustine Prep — first as a member of the math department and then as the school’s Director of College Guidance and member of the Prep Administrative team. Mrs. Coyle also taught Mathematics, Religion, and Reading at St. Peter’s School in Merchantville, NJ. She is a graduate of Rowan University and holds a Certificate in School Leadership. Mrs. Coyle resides in Vineland with her husband and two children and is a parishioner of St. Padre Pio Parish.
BOARD OF TRUSTEES
The Board of Trustees, the Provincial Council of the Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy, is the governing body responsible for Our Lady of Mercy Academy.
- Sister M. Ambrogina Aldeni, Provincial
- Sister Margaret M. Curcio, Vicar Provincial
- Sister Eileen Marie McGowan, Councilor
- Sister M. Damian Aussi, Councilor
- Sister M. Judith Tarozzi, Councilor
The five-member Board of Trustees is guided by an Advisory Board comprised of outside experts in the fields of education, community service, government relations, finance, youth leadership, technology, construction, facilities management, marketing, and social services. The Advisory Board participates in the policy-making process by formulating, reviewing, and recommending policies for consideration by the Board of Trustees.
Advisory Board members include:
- Kenneth Figgs. Ed.M., Board President and former Manager of Administrative Training Programs, NJ State Department of Education (retired)
- Dana Catalana, MSW, LCSW, Board Secretary, OLMA Alumna, and Alumnae Parent
- Dr. Piera Gravenor, Alumna Parent and Superintendent Delsea Regional School District & Elk Township School District
- Tina Ritondaro, Director of HCMS Solutions, NFI
- Dave P. Schad, CPA
- Deborah Wallace, Wallace Supply Company
- Margaret Durham
About Our Foundress
Benedetta, better known as Saint Mary Joseph Rossello, is the foundress of the Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy. She was born on May 27, 1811 to a ceramics craftsman and his wife. As a child she assisted her father in his workshop and helped her mother bake bread for the poor. Her favorite game was “school” and she taught the neighborhood children religion on the back steps of her house. She enjoyed taking her “students” on “field trips” to the chapel in Abisola to pray and sing to Mary, the Mother of Mercy.
As Benedetta became a young adult, she visited the chapel every day, seeking spiritual direction and praying: “I have only one wish, to become a saint: help the poor, and avoid sin because it offends the Lord.” On August 10, 1837, the feast day of Saint Lawrence, Benedetta started the Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy. With four young women she moved into an old house called The Commenda. On October 22, 1837, the bishop came to the house to preside over a blessing ceremony. It was then that Benedetta changed her name to Sister Mary Joseph Rossello.