Ironwood Academy has a reputation for hiring the best teachers in the area. Our Instructors are highly experienced and engaged professionals with advanced degrees. They are passionate about the subjects or grade that they teach. At Ironwood, we believe strongly that teachers should be extremely well paid and empowered because a truly great teacher can make all the difference in how a young person sees his or her future. We provide an environment that allows teachers to use all of their creative skills and giftedness and we reward them for going beyond the norm to reach and challenge our students. As a result, the students at Ironwood Academy are the beneficiaries; they are being taught by the best of the best.
Dr. David A. Tretler recently retired as the Dean of Faculty and Academic Programs at the National War College in Washington, DC, culminating 50 years of Federal Government service capped by 26 years teaching graduate-level courses on all aspects of national security strategy to senior professional military officers and government officials.
Dr. Tretler retired from the Air Force as a colonel in 1998 after thirty years active service. He flew 250 combat missions in the F-4D Phantom during the Vietnam War, was an instructor pilot in the T-38 jet trainer, served in the plans directorates at both the USAF Air Training Command and USAF headquarters, and was Deputy Chief of Air Force History before joining the faculty at National War College in 1992.
Dr. Tretler earned both M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in military history from Rice University. He taught military history for eight years at the U.S. Air Force Academy, where he served as Director of Military History, responsible for curriculum development, course design, and teaching performance.
During his time at the National War College, Dr. Tretler worked regularly with officials throughout the U.S. national security establishment. He participated in week-long strategic studies seminars with government officials in Singapore, Australia, South Korea, Japan, Poland and Hungary, and also served as a consultant on strategic planning to the governments of Poland and Croatia.
Dr. Tretler was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal with 17 oak leaf clusters for his service during the Vietnam War. Subsequently he earned both the Defense Superior Service Award and the CJCS Joint Distinguished Civilian Service Award – the highest civilian service award presented by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff – for his work at the National War College.
Dr. Tretler is married to the former Joy Doty of Sarasota, FL, and they have two children, Brian and Jessica.
Terry Morris serves as Executive Director of Ironwood Academy. She has over 35 years experience in entrepreneurial non-profit leadership, as well as corporate strategy and development experience with global, publicly-traded companies. In 2011, Terry and a small group of parents and teachers founded Ironwood Academy as a rigorous college-prep tutorial for middle and high school homeschool students in the Nashville area. She currently serves as President of the Board of Directors and administers the program. Terry holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from the University of Tennessee and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Texas. She is a Tennessee state-certified Teacher and she homeschooled her own son, who is now a senior in college.