CEO & Co-founder
As you invest in the best ways to educate your family, you want to know that the guide you choose to partner with understands your needs and those of your children. Nels does. In his words, “Growing up, I experienced both homeschool and public school. Although both gave me many great learning opportunities, I always longed for more interaction with like-minded peers and adults in a thriving community of learning.” This experience led Nels to co-found Williamsburg with his best friend, James Ure, in 2008. Today, Nels is thrilled to be building a positive and challenging learning environment for Williamsburg students, including his children, that wasn’t available during his youth.
Nels studied liberal arts in college and went on to earn an MBA from the Acton School of Business in Austin, Texas. He lives in Saint George, Utah, with his wife and five kids. Nels loves cycling, backpacking, meditating, reading great books, and spending quality time with his family and friends. He believes in starting each day with a power green smoothie.
President & Co-founder
James loves inspiring parents, teachers, and education leaders to bring out the best in students and prepare them for the unique challenges and opportunities of the 21st century. As President of Williamsburg, James focuses on ensuring you can count on the quality of mentorship your student receives throughout their time with us. In 2014, James earned recognition as one of the top five online teachers in America, and he’s led the design of The Williamsburg Curriculum and professional development for mentors since launching Williamsburg, with Nels Jensen, in 2008. James is passionate about education reform and someday wants to run for office to further this cause.
After earning an English degree, James graduated summa cum laude from South Texas College of Law with an emphasis in Constitutional Law. He lives in the desert of southern Utah with his wife, Ange, and their four children. He loves running, biking, climbing, literature, movies, rock concerts, yoga, and comedy nights with his nerdy friends.
Chief Operating Officer
Ben’s priority is ensuring that everything behind-the-scenes of the Williamsburg classroom is functioning smoothly to deliver a consistently excellent experience for you and your student. Ben was the first mentor hired at Williamsburg and has worked in almost every other role in the organization, so he knows what it takes to make this happen. For Ben, “Ensuring that all the details are in place so mentors can focus on facilitating transformational learning experiences in every class is immensely satisfying.”
Ben holds B.A. in Statesmanship from George Wythe University. He lives with his wife, Elise, and their three kids—Charly, Malcolm, and Murphy––in Saint George, Utah. Ben loves reading, rock climbing, yoga, and Saturday morning hikes with his family. Before he dies, he wants to rock-climb the Great Wall of China, do yoga in a Hindu temple in India, and backpack all over Iceland.
Chief Marketing Officer
Adam is passionate about building a vibrant and expanding community to support your student in their adventure through online learning. In his words, “I love inspiring parents and students to get a great education and overcome the barriers in their way. My role directly aligns with my life's mission, so it’s as much a calling as it is a career.” Adam joined Williamsburg in 2010 as a mentor, and has designed and taught much of The Williamsburg Curriculum. He has presented talks on alternative education throughout the U.S. and Canada and loves finding creative ways to expand and enhance the Williamsburg tribe.
Adam holds a B.A. in Liberal Arts from George Wythe University. He lives with his wife, Laura, of thirteen years and their son Emmet in St. George, Utah. Adam loves wrestling with his son, hiking, reading, discussing, CrossFit, cinema, and making delicious food for family and friends.
Chief Academic Officer
You value having the freedom to choose how, what, and where your student learns, and you want to make the most of that freedom. Anya is with you. As she says, “I believe strongly in providing high-quality educational choices for parents and students.” Anya began her career as a teacher and later moved into school administration. She formerly served as Executive Director of George Washington Academy, an award-winning charter school in St. George, Utah. Today, Anya oversees the smooth functioning of the Williamsburg classroom and builds partnerships with schools and districts to make The Williamsburg Curriculum available to families at no cost. She also serves as the Board Chair of the Utah Association of Public Charter Schools.
Anya holds Bachelor’s degrees in Child Development and Social & Behavioral Sciences, a Master’s degree, and an Administrative Endorsement in K-12 School Leadership. She and her husband, Alex, have been married for 22 years and have three amazing children. Outside of education, Anya’s passions include the ocean, travel, art, humanitarian work, chocolate, and hot yoga.