I am the custodian at Yadkin Success Academy and work full time. I have been here for approximately for seven years. I am married and have one daughter, one step-daughter, and one delightful grandchild. My husband, grandchild, and I live in East Bend, NC. I love spending time with my family and I love going on vacations.
Monica Byrd was born in 1984 and raised in Yadkin County. She currently lives in Yadkinville with her 6 year old son, Jax, and their goldendoodle, Ringo.
Ms. Byrd attended Yadkinville Elementary School and graduated from Forbush High School in 2003. She always knew she wanted to be a teacher and continued her education at Appalachian State University. She graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor's Degree in History, Secondary Education.
Ms. Byrd taught English and Social Studies at Eckerd Youth Alternatives for 2 1/2 years before coming to Yadkin Success Academy. She currently teaches high school history classes and coaches volleyball at Forbush Middle School.
She loves having adventures with her son and anything Elvis!
Ms. Simmons has been an educator for 11 years. She began her career with WS/FCS where she taught middle and high school. This is her fourth year with Yadkin County, all of which have been at the Success Academy in the middle school. She is the mother of three and currently lives in Pilot Mountain.
She has a two year degree in Information Systems Technology from FTCC; Bachelors in History, Art History, and Secondary Education from Salem College; and a Masters in American History with a Graduate Certificate in Civil War studies from AMU.
Mr. Payne is a graduate of Starmount High School, class of 2005. He also attended Surry Community College and Catawba Valley Community College where he played basketball.
Mr. Payne spent eight years in various manufacturing jobs the most recent at Reynolds American Inc. After receiving his work keys certificate, he was hired at YSA as the online learning facilitator where he has worked since 2016. Mr. Payne is also middle school basketball and golf coach.
Mr. Payne is a husband and a father and enjoys his time with his family (they are avid Disney World fans and go every chance they get). He also enjoys to play golf and watching a variety of many different sports.
K-5 Special Education teacher at Yadkin Success Academy. Born and raised in Boonville, N.C. I have three siblings, an older brother and two younger sisters. I am married to Richard A. Russell, Jr. (Ricky) and we have one child, Lamar A. Russell, a wonderful daughter-in-law, Julie H. Russell and one precious grandson, Makhi A. Russell. I like to teach, sew, cook, spend time with family, and work in the church.
I attended elementary school at Yadkin High School and after segregation, Boonville Elementary School. I am a 1978 graduate of Starmount High School and a 1982 graduate of Bennett College of Greensboro, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Home Economics Education. Due to no job openings at that time, I landed in a sewing plant as a supervisor.
After several years there, they closed due to low demand and I took a job as director of afterschool at Boonville Elementary School on May 4, 1999.
In August of 2003, I accepted a job as an assistant teacher for the self-contained SED class at Yadkin Success Academy. At the end of the year, the teacher took another job closer to home and I interviewed for that job which I got. I was directed to take some classes to become certified as a Special Education Teacher which I took at Surry in Yadkin through a cohort with Appalachian State University and became certified.
I am currently still teaching at Yadkin Success Academy in the K-5 SED classroom. Every day is a new day and a challenge sometimes, but YSA has been a great place to work at and the place I plan to retire from some day!
Mr. Russell is a graduate of Starmount High School. On May 16 th , 2005 he started working with Yadkin County Schools as a Group Leader. Mr. Russell worked his way up to an Assistant Director and worked at multiple Elementary Schools in the county over a 10 year span. While he was working there he was also attending Wilkes Community College where he played basketball and earned a Work Keys Certificate that allowed him to apply for a TA job with Yadkin Success Academy.
He was hired by YSA and started working there on October 14 th, 2015, with the lead teacher Ms. Rebecca Simmons. They like to call themselves the Dynamic Duo although the kids may think different. A few side notes about Mr. Russell: He is 31 years young, married to a teacher that works at Yadkinville Elementary school (Julie Russell ), and they are currently in the process of adopting a child. Mr. Russell enjoy long walks…….. to the outfield because slow-pitch softball is his JAM. He also enjoys anything sports related.
Enough about him though… hope that if you guys meet, this will help to know that
Mr. Russell may look mean on the outside but he is a small teddy bear on the inside. Kind of like the teddy bear you win after you have failed to win the big prize at the fair, just to give you an idea of size.
Melinda Vestal was born in Forsyth County on a warm fall day in October. She attended school in Forsyth County graduating from North Forsyth High School in 1984. After graduation Ms Vestal attended Lees-McCrae College receiving an associate degree in business. She continued her education at High Point University where she received a bachelors degree in Business Administration.
Ms. Vestal moved to Boonville in 1993 after marrying her husband David. They raised two children, Erika and Dalton. Erika lives in Graham with her husband Ryan. Dalton lives in Indiana.
Ms Vestal received her teaching license in 2007. She was then hired to teach computer skills to middle school students and taught computer applications to high school students. Ms Vestal currently teaches Personal Finance, Career Management and Principles of Business. Ms Vestal has taught at YSA for the past 11 years.
In her spare time she enjoys going to the beach, spending time with her family and friends and her dog, Cash.
Amber Waddell was raised in the small town of Roaring River and now resides with her husband, William, just outside of Yadkin County. Mrs. Waddell graduated from East Wilkes High School in 2009 and attended Wilkes Community College for two years. It was there she discovered her passion for social work and supporting others in times of need. She then transferred to Appalachian State University, and completed an internship with Wilkes County Department of Juvenile Justice. Mrs. Waddell graduated with the summa cum laude honor, earning her Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work and a minor in Sociology. She was also a first generation college graduate in her family. After graduation, Mrs. Waddell worked at the Children’s Center of Northwest North Carolina for five years as a Residential Social Worker. In 2018, Mrs. Waddell began her new position as the School Social Worker for Yadkin Success Academy and enjoys working with all of the wonderful students. Mrs. Waddell and her husband enjoy the great outdoors every chance they get. They often take their two dogs, Odin and Newbie, on hikes and camping trips.
Addie Walsh is the high school math teacher at YSA. She graduated from Davie County High School and enrolled at Meredith College as a teaching fellow and honors student. She graduated from Meredith College with a Bachelor of Science degree in math and 9-12 certification in teaching math. Mrs. Walsh was a member of Silver Shield (honorary leadership society) and Pi Mu Epsilon (math honor society) and she also received the Senior in Mathematics award. Mrs. Walsh started her teaching career at Cummings High School in Burlington where she taught Algebra IA, Algebra IB, Geometry, and Tech Math. When Mrs. Walsh moved back home, she started teaching in the Yadkin County School system. She has taught at Fall Creek, Courtney, and Forbush Middle. Mrs. Walsh is married and has two sons, Jackson and Franklin. She loves spending time with my family, reading, and working puzzles
I am from Surry County. I am a 1989 graduate of Elkin High School. I am married to Randy Willard. I have a special niece, great niece, and one special great nephew. I love spending time with my family and walking. I attended Surry Community College.
I started working for Yadkin County Schools on August 1, 2004. For 15 years I have been an E.C. Teacher Assistant at Yadkin Success Academy. I enjoy my job at YSA and intend for it to be the place from which I retire.