Jeffrey Presberg


Member, Board of Directors

Jeff currently serves as the founding President of the Samuel & Erasmus institute,  (SEi), developing and guiding its vision and strategic growth and leading the formation and execution of its materials and activities.  He has over twenty years of broad experience in education, ranging from teaching and coaching to a variety of administrative responsibilities.


Primarily in the humanities, Jeff has taught at the lower, middle and upper school levels, has given guest lectures at the college and university level, and has led numerous conversation-style seminars with fellow educators and university students.  He has also initiated and led outreach liberal arts programs for parents.  He has a passion for liberal arts learning and in particular has focused on and advocated for understanding the importance of such issues as the imagination, the emotions, freedom, and beauty and contemplative silence in educational practices and cultures.  Jeff has continually reflected on, discussed, and researched educational matters and, fusing ideas and practical action, has initiated numerous innovations and projects wherever he has worked.  He also penned the school song for the two private liberal arts schools where he worked: The Heights School in Potomac, Maryland and Western Academy in Houston, Texas.


Jeff taught for over fifteen years at The Heights School.  In addition to teaching, coaching, serving as the Head of the Lower School and member of the Administrative Council, directing the summer programs, and writing and directing upper school plays, he initiated such things as the Clan/House system and school-wide poetry recital competitions.  He initiated Adventure History travel programs, leading students and fellow teachers to different places throughout the US and learning of the place’s geography and history with a spirit of friendship and exploration—including lengthy hikes, whitewater rafting, and horseback riding.  He also led various efforts in curriculum, faculty, and arts development, and designed and implemented a modified block scheduling system that encouraged the integration of stories, conversation, tactile learning, the experience of art, and outdoor exploration within the regular classroom framework.  While working at The Heights, Jeff started and ran a culture and leisure society for adults, The Harp Club, and was a member of the Potomac Athletic Club, a men’s rugby club.  During this time he also met and married his wife, Kristin Marie.


More recently, Jeff served as the Founding Headmaster of Western Academy. Starting from scratch, he led all major aspects of the successful and rapid founding.   He developed and articulated the vision and orchestrated the project, from fundraising, budgets, construction, campus design, logos, and marketing, to faculty development, curriculum, and the various practical ingredients that go into setting a dynamic and personal culture of learning.  (Among a number of subtle but noteworthy elements that continue to shape the educational culture at Western Academy, Jeff added competitions in short plays to the House System—all students and most faculty participate.)


In addition to SEi, Jeff is a Managing Partner with Petroleum Connection, and is a private consultant for educational and communication matters.  With Petroleum Connection, he led the rebranding effort and has had a primary focus of developing conversation and an informed perspective on the communal, economic, technological, and environmental issues surrounding hydraulic fracturing.


Jeff received a B.A. in English Literature and a Master of Humanities from the University of Dallas and was an active member of the UD rugby team.

Jeff, Kristin and their family live in the Houston, Texas area.

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SEi is a Federal 501 (c) (3)  tax exempt public charity.  Contributions are tax deductible.