ACS Education Foundation

The goal of the Foundation is to share American Educational values globally, with a special emphasis on the Middle Eastern region.

ACS Education Foundation is a public charity under the U.S. Internal Revenue Service Code. Public Charity Status: 170 (b) (1) (A) (vi). ACS Education Foundation is exempt from U.S. Federal income tax under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. ACS EF is also qualified to receive tax deductible bequests, devises, transfers or gifts under section 2055, 2106 or 2522 of the Code.

Foundation Board Members


Leslie Shivamber is the Secretary for the ACS Education Foundation. For the past three years, Leslie has been the Alumni Relations Coordinator for the American Community School of Abu Dhabi (ACS). She has served in this role since 2017.

In addition to Alumni Coordinator, Leslie has held multiple school positions, including serving on the ACS Board of Trustees from 2013 to 2016 and as Board Admin Liaison. She served on the Policy, Institutional Advancement, and Finance Committees while on the Board. Leslie is a former ACS parent; her two children graduated in 2013 and 2016. 

While her children attended Ocean Breeze Elementary School in Indian Harbour Beach, Florida, she was Vice president and Treasurer of the PTO. Leslie also served on the School Advisory Council for four years. When she moved with her family to Abu Dhabi in 2010, Leslie quickly became involved at ACS, creating the school’s first New Family Buddy Program. In addition, she co-chaired the annual International Day events for three years and the High School Career Day for two years. 

Leslie attended Indiana University and graduated with a BS in Mathematics. After graduating, she spent ten years as a retail buyer for Bloomingdales in New York City. She and her husband currently reside in Nashville, Tennessee.


Laura Puryear has been involved in education at the board level since joining the American School of Abu Dhabi school board in 2011. She served until 2017 and filled roles such as Governance committee chair, Search committee co-chair, Board Vice-Chair and Chairperson.  Since returning to the United States, she now serves on the National Cathedral School for Girls Governing Board as the Head of School Transition committee chair and Vice-Chair of the Board.  Professionally, Laura is an Executive Vice President at Bain & Company, a global strategy consulting firm. She and her husband reside in Washington DC with their four daughters.


Gregory J. Golden is the principal legal counsel for Northrop Grumman’s business, operations, pursuits, and joint ventures in the Middle East, North Africa, and Afghanistan. 

Prior to joining Northrop Grumman, Mr. Golden was a partner of the international law firm Baker Botts L.L.P. where he represented public and private companies in connection with domestic and international transactional and compliance matters. From 2009 to 2014, Mr. Golden was the Partner in Charge of the firm’s office in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. While residing in Abu Dhabi, Mr. Golden was elected as the Chairman of AmCham Abu Dhabi, the Abu Dhabi member of the global network of American Chambers of Commerce, and he also served on the Board of Trustees of the American Community School of Abu Dhabi, a non-profit, U.S. accredited college preparatory school serving a culturally diverse student body.

Mr. Golden was appointed by the Virginia State Bar to serve on a committee responsible for reviewing and adjudicating complaints against members of the Virginia Bar. He was also appointed by the Chief Justice of the Virginia Supreme Court to serve as a faculty member for a mandatory professionalism course for all newly-admitted members of the Virginia Bar. Mr. Golden is also a member of the Advisory Board for the Reves Center for International Studies at the College of William & Mary.

After graduating from law school, Mr. Golden served as a law clerk to United States District Judge Robert R. Merhige Jr. of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.

Mr. Golden is a graduate of the University of Richmond School of Law and Washington and Lee University.  


John Hackworth is a retired educator from Kentucky who received an undergraduate degree from Kenyon College, an MA from the University of Arkansas, and an administrative credential from The College of New Jersey. John was a teacher and later the elementary principal at Sayre School, an independent college preparatory school in Lexington, Kentucky. In 1979, he and his wife, Carolyn, embarked on overseas teaching careers. Their first assignment took them to the American School of Kuwait, then in 1981 to Saudi Arabian International Schools, Jubail campus, and finally in 1987 to the American Community School of Abu Dhabi (ACS). John taught at ACS for three years before becoming its first High School Principal. The high school was newly formed in 1990, whereas previously ACS Abu Dhabi had been a KG through Grade 9 school.

Returning to the US in 1999, John returned to Sayre School as an admissions officer, and eventually, he became the Director of Admissions before retiring in 2012. For the past 20 years, he has been very active in the work of the Blue Grass Trust for Historic Preservation, the 14th oldest preservation non-profit organization in the nation, serving as board president and chair of numerous committees. John has maintained an interest in the happenings at ACS Abu Dhabi through his contacts with teachers, parents, and alumni, and he enthusiastically supports the vibrant alumni association developed by ACS. 


Monique Flickinger is the Superintendent at the American Community School of Abu Dhabi (ACS). Established in 1972, ACS is a non-profit, U.S. accredited college preparatory school with an international student population of approximately 1,200 students, representing about 60 countries.

Prior to that, Ms. Flickinger was the Head of School at The Metropolitan School of Panama. The school had 860 students, 99 teachers, 61 support staff. Over her 3-year tenure, she increased enrollment by 30% and oversaw the authorization of the DP/MYP program thus becoming the first full continuum IB school in Central America. She was also responsible for the creation, planning, and oversight of the new campus design for the start in 2020. 

Prior to that she was the Director of Instructional Technology at Poudre School District in Fort Collins, Colorado. This high-performing district of 26,000 students transitioned to 1:1 during her time and she oversaw the instructional training for 1800 teachers and more than 100 principals. She also became highly involved and co-led Colorado’s monthly technology CIO and tech director’s meetings.  

She has served as the middle school principal at Lincoln IB World School (2007-2011) and also at Evanston Middle School in Evanston, Wyoming, and Stevens Middle School in Port Angeles, Washington. Previous to her roles as school leadership, she was a math teacher and special needs teacher in Canada, United States, and Costa Rica.  

Before entering education, Monique was a newspaper publisher that included three weekly newspapers and a design firm. She was recognized for becoming one of the first digital newspapers in Canada and was awarded the Young Entrepreneur Award of Canada for leadership skills and technology improvements within the industry.  

She has a Bachelors in Mathematics from Brigham Young University, an MEd in Leadership from the University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada and has completed her Doctoral classes in Educational Leadership from the University of Wyoming, United States. 

How to Donate

search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close