Head of School
Dr. John Patterson
Dr. John Patterson began his tenure as the Head of School at First Presbyterian Day School in June 2020.
Dr. Patterson was born and raised in central Illinois where his family has owned a family business for over 90 years (Patterson Bros. Oil & Gas). He graduated from Williamsville Township High School where he finished near the top of his class and was an all-state basketball selection his junior and senior year.
Following high school, Dr. Patterson was accepted to the United States Military Academy at West Point and graduated in 1996 as a letterman on the basketball team and as a distinguished wreath recipient. He graduated with a BS in Systems Engineering from West Point. Following his graduation from West Point, Dr. Patterson served the majority of his active duty Army commitment at Ft. Stewart, Georgia, in the 3rd Infantry Division. While serving, Dr. Patterson was a highly-recognized officer. He was ranked as the top Lieutenant in 1-9 Field Artillery and was rated below the zone as he achieved the rank of Captain. He served five years active duty in the U.S. Army and served in Kuwait and Iraq during Operation Desert Fox in December of 1998. Following his active duty requirement, Dr. Patterson accepted a position with Ethicon as a medical equipment sales representative. While with Ethicon, Dr. Patterson was a leader in sales after a very short time with the company. Dr. Patterson then took a job in Kalamazoo, Michigan, with Stryker Leibinger as a product manager. As a product manager, Dr. Patterson managed a $14-million budget and managed 75 territorial sales representatives.
However, with all his corporate success, Dr. Patterson continued to feel called to his passion: basketball and young people. In 2002, Dr. Patterson realized this calling by becoming the head boys’ basketball coach and math/computer instructor at Liberty (Bedford) High School in Bedford, VA. Following his three-year stint at Liberty (Bedford) High School, Dr. Patterson was hired to serve at Liberty Christian Academy as the boys’ head basketball coach and math instructor. In 2007, given his marketing experience, Dr. Patterson was asked to create and implement a new office at LCA called “The Office of Academy Relations.” This office was primarily responsible for admissions, marketing, and fundraising. Dr. John Patterson was appointed Head of School at Liberty Christian Academy in July of 2010. Under his leadership, LCA grew to be the largest private school in Virginia and a flagship school of Christian private education in the Southeast.
Dr. Patterson is a servant leader who believes in leading by example, listening, and rallying a team to accomplish its mission. He seeks to enhance the Christ-centered culture of encouragement and strong academic rigor that are the foundation of FPD. One thing is for sure, when you encounter Dr. Patterson, you are likely to receive a “Viking Bump,” a word of encouragement, and a “Go Vikings” as he departs. Dr. Patterson has served in education for 20 years and has been married to his wife, Cindy, for 25 years. Cindy is also an educator. The Patterson’s have a daughter, Gracie, who attends Samford University.
“A Christian worldview (based on the narrative of Creation – Fall – Redemption) is the only chance young people have to navigate the current culture that bombards students daily with mixed messages on what brings true happiness,” notes Dr. Patterson. “FPD teaches young people to find true joy in Christ and have an others-focused servant mindset. Humble, Christ-like leadership is the only way to change the world, and this is our mission at FPD.”