It's with mixed emotions and sincere gratitude for their service that we are announcing the retirement of several members of the Davies community.
Virginia DiMattia, Teacher's Assistant, 35 Years 1986-2021
Mrs. Virginia DiMattia has been one of Davies' biggest supporters over the past thirty-five years. Mrs. DiMattia remembers that the first three years were a culture shock for her but after the shock wore off she has not stopped in her dedication to Davies' students.
In 1990, she welcomed the future Class of 1994 as a class advisor alongside Mrs. Robin Pecuniosco. Mrs. DiMattia chronicled the class's four-year journey through high school and milestone events. Then Nationwide Insurance held a Prom Promise competition. Mrs. DiMattia signed up Davies and students pledged to have fun at prom without substances or alcohol, then for good measure, she proceeded to invite Len Bias' mother, Dr. Lonise Bias to Davies to speak prior to prom. After Davies successfully held its 1994 Prom with no instance of drug or alcohol abuse, Mrs. DiMattia submitted her book of the Class of 1994's four-year journey to prom, winning the class a cash prize of $2000 which they used towards the 1994 Senior Luau. While most would stop at winning, Mrs. DiMattia didn't stop there. She sent a letter to the President who rang Davies on the telephone speaking to several of the ladies in the office before reaching Mrs. DiMattia. President Clinton also sent a wonderful letter congratulating the Class of 1994 for their win, their prom promise, and best wishes for their future. This is just one of many stories which help to illustrate the commitment of Mrs. DiMattia to the students of Davies.
- From 2009-2014, Mrs. DiMattia coached the Davies' Debate Team. She didn't understand why it was mostly male students but that didn't stop her from working with them to ultimately securing a State win against Classical high school and enjoying multiple competition trips to Boston, New York City, and Washington, DC. "We (Davies) hosted the Entire RI Urban Debate League on a day-long Saturday. Parents [from other schools] came in and thought the school was a hidden gem. It made me feel so proud!" stated DiMattia.
- From YEAR to 2021, Mrs. DiMattia lead the Teacher Assistant Union as President.
- From 2010-2013, as the Chairperson for Davies' Community Relations Committee, Mrs. DiMattia worked collaboratively with faculty and parents to produce multiple yearly parent-facing events. The highlights of the year were always the Fashion and Talent Shows.
- From 2011-2014, Mrs. DiMattia was Davies' RISD Arts Open Door Project Coordinator producing several large and colorful murals around the school hallways. Her words are painted in the hallway exclaiming "Knowledge is power!" It is safe to say that these murals will remain at Davies for years to come reminding everyone of Mrs. DiMattia's presence.
- From 2012-2020, as After-School Activities Coordinator Mrs. DiMattia took club attendances and ensured the kids received snacks to keep them fueled for more learning.
- From 2013-2021, Mrs. DiMattia was an active member of the Positive Behaviors Interventions and Supports (PBIS) Committee where she worked closely with Mrs. Christina Cipolla to offer students rewards for good behavior and honors for perfect attendance.
The Power of The Ocean & The Human Spirit
The human spirit is as resilient as an ocean. We must understand that the same salt in our bodies can be found in the ocean's waters. The pulsating energy of the ocean runs through each of us. boundless energy, knowledge, wisdom gives the human spirit shape. 'Knowledge is power!' Education gives us the tools to compete. Education empowers the human spirit. It is intrinsic. Education is like a beacon light that guides us forward from darkness to light. The ocean and the human spirit have survived catastrophic and cataclysmic events. Our inner strength propels us forward, just as the ocean waters are in perpetual motion, the human spirit is as resilient as any ocean!
Tina Campbell, Reading Teacher, 30 Years 1991-2021
For the past 30 years, Mrs. Tina Campbell has been the anchor of Davies' Reading Department as the Reading Department Coordinator. Her original classroom was in the modular building for many years before she was moved into the main building. Mrs. Campbell organized the Reading Is Fundamental Free Book Distribution for 28 years. The Reading Is Fundamental Free Book Distribution Program would provide students with three free books throughout the school year. Mrs. Campbell also ran the beloved school book fairs for 20 years. Prior to Davies, Mrs. Campbell taught eleven years; two in preschool, seven years as an elementary education teacher; and two years as a junior high Reading Teacher. She stated "I have had the pleasure of instructing so many wonderful students over the years and have been truly blessed to have had such a rewarding career meeting so many inspiring people along the way."
Pasquale (Pat) Genco, Computer Technical & Math Teacher, 19 Years 2001-2021
Mr. Pat Genco started at Davies as a technical teacher for Computers. It's not very often that a teacher will move from the Career and Technical Education side to the Academic one. More rare is a teacher who has attended every Senior supper and graduation event. Mr. Genco will joke that he went to the suppers for the food but we know it's because of his dedication to his students. When looking back on his time Mr. Genco has called it bittersweet. He loved the moments when a former smart-aleck student would return from the military and respond to his questions with "Yes, Sir!" Mr. Genco never had a program staying late to help a student who asked for help. One student he recalled had a learning disability and a speech impediment. Every time he stayed late to help the student he could see in their eyes that they had the motivation to overcome it. That student returned 2 years after graduating to visit Mr. Genco and reveal that they were now a program manager for a software firm making a 6 figure salary. Mr. Genco said this was the most poignant moment. While inquiring if Mr. Genco had been the recipient or victim of any harmless senior pranks Mr. Genco stated "the kids always told me things that I sometimes didn't want to know." When one senior prank filled Mr. Champagne's office with balloons, Mr. Genco knew possibly before Mr. Champagne. Finally, Mr. Genco reflected and stated "every kid has that moment where they are figuratively hit in the head. It may come early or it may come late, but eventually, it will come and it's nice to see the person you've helped them become."
Al Carvalho, Custodian, 9 Years 2012-2021
Anthony Lima, Custodian & Groundskeeper, 4 Years 2017-2021