John Stockwell, phd

executive Director

From 1994 through 2011, John served as chancellor of the University of South Carolina Upstate located in Spartanburg County; following service in other higher education positions in California, Indiana, New York, and Wisconsin.  He has served in numerous volunteer civic capacities in the County including the founding board chair of the Spartanburg Chapter of the Urban League of the Upstate; board member and chair of the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce, the Children’s Services Alliances, and the College Hub; and is currently a trustee of the Spartanburg County Foundation


Beth Thompson

Director of Collaborative Action Networks

Beth serves as the Director of Collaborative Action Networks.  Previously Beth served as the Executive Director of Union County First Steps and was previously employed with the Upstate Workforce Investment Board, giving her a true understanding of the Cradle-to-Career continuum we work with to improve student success. She also has experience in working with other nonprofit organizations in Spartanburg including the Carolina Piedmont Foundation and The Arts Partnership.  Ms. Thompson has an Associate in Science degree from USC Union and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from USC Upstate. Ms. Thompson is also a graduate of the Nonprofit Leadership Training Certificate program the Sisters of Charity Foundation and Columbia College. Beth, her husband, Josh, and their son Caleb recently welcomed a new addition to the family, Ralph "Tate" Thompson.


IDA Thompson

PRogram and  Network manager

Ida Thompson served as Director of the Spartanburg Regional Child Development Program from 1991 to 2009. Prior to becoming director, she was Head Teacher of the Infant and Toddler Program from 1976 to 2009.   In 2004, Spartanburg Regional renamed the center as the “Ida Thompson Child Development Program” in her honor.  Ms. Thompson earned a BA Degree in Early Childhood Education from Georgia Southern University, a MEd Degree in Education from Converse College and an EdS in Marriage and Family Therapy.  Ida coordinates SAM's engagement with the nationwide StriveTogether network.

Sheryl Booker 

Support Specialist

Sheryl Booker is an enthusiastic supporter for the growth and betterment of the Spartanburg community.  She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Finance from Wofford College and both a Masters and Education Specialist Degree in Counselor Education from the University of South Carolina.  She formerly held positions as a Professional & Executive Banker at Bank of America and school counselor at Paul M. Dorman High School in Spartanburg School District Six. Currently, Sheryl serves on the board of directors for the First Tee of Spartanburg and the Glenn Springs Academy for Boys. She is also a member of the community advisory board for Nurse-Family Partnership and serves on the Executive Committee of Women Giving For Spartanburg.

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Glen carson

data Manager

Glen Carson serves as the Data Manager for the Spartanburg Academic Movement. During his 37 years as a professional educator, Glen has taught mathematics, sciences and research at the middle school, high school and university levels. In addition, Glen has served as an administrator at USC Upstate and in Spartanburg School Districts Four and Seven. He holds a Bachelor’s degree from Clemson University, a Master’s degree from Furman University and a Doctorate from the University of South Carolina. Glen has two sons, two daughters, and a daughter-in-law.

Kim Atchley

Kim Atchley 

Director of Communications

Kim earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Education from USC Upstate and taught middle school science in Aiken and Spartanburg Counties. She became a freelance writer while taking time to raise her family and care for her aging parents, She then became director of marketing and public relations and later executive director for a local nonprofit organization. Joining the SAM team, Kim has returned to her roots in education. Kim is active volunteer with the Palmetto Council Boy Scouts and has completed Wood Badge, an advanced, national leadership course. Kim is a graduate of the Spartanburg County Foundation’s 2017 Grassroots Leadership Development Institute.

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Sharon Lauer 

Program Manager

Sharon, a graduate of Christian University in Forth Worth, Texas, joined the SAM team in 2017 as project manager for the area of improving College/Career Ready graduation outcomes for students in Spartanburg County.  Having earned technical certification followed later by her Business Administration degree and spending many years as a full-cycle corporate recruiter, Sharon brings deeper perspective to preparing graduate for their next stage of life.  Sharon and her husband Joe have lived in Spartanburg for 13 years and have two children.