Honoring Our Founders

October 8, 2021

In establishing Green Chimneys School for Little Folk in 1947, Founders Samuel B. “Rollo” Ross, Jr. and his wife Myra Ross understood that the foundation of education required more than just academics. For students in a residential setting, establishing confidence through varied skill-building activities was critical to setting the groundwork for strong academic and emotional growth into the future.

Having attended boarding school from a relatively young age, Dr. Ross knew how much his experiences in and out of the classroom shaped his life. In leading and mentoring staff for over 70 years, Myra Ross taught that for children with mental health challenges, our work is not about curing the child; it is about helping them develop the tools and skills they need to tackle whatever challenges they may face once they leave us.

Creating a school where children received academics and recreation in a loving environment, with the unique experience of interacting with and caring for animals, the Rosses saw the role animals can play in building the essential skills of empathy, a sense of responsibility, and accomplishment. Those core beliefs continue today with opportunities for residential and day students to not only interact with animals but also play a major role in their care.

The Ross’ philosophy of skill-building also flourishes in our therapeutic recreation activities and Raptors sports teams as they help to build skills of teamwork, determination, and resilience, while our Learn and Earn and Vocational Education programs, teach both practical and soft skills that create a strong work ethic and purpose.

We are proud to continue the legacy of Sam and Myra Ross. Their vision is permanently embedded in our work every day and will be into the future.

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