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Administrative Team


Benjamin (Ben) Kohlhorst

Mr. Kohlhorst was named principal at John Hanson Middle School in 2018.  Prior to serving as principal, he was principal of C. Paul Barnhart Elementary school for two years and vice principal of John Hanson Middle school for six years.  At Hanson, Kohlhorst served as vice principal to 6th, 7th, and 8th-grade students.

Ben Kohlhorst began working for Charles County Public Schools in 2004 as a teacher with the STAY Program at the F.B. Gwynn Center. During its opening year in 2007, he moved to Theodore G. Davis Middle School where he taught 6th-grade mathematics and also served as the 6th-grade team leader. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Bowling Green State University and a master’s degree from McDaniel College.

Shayna Gold


Shayna Gold
Assistant Principal

Shayna Gold began teaching in Charles County in 2003 as a special educator at Henry E. Lackey High School. Prior to this, she held the same position in Fairfax County, VA for three years. In 2008, she became an IEP facilitator and worked in special education compliance until 2015 when she transitioned to administration. She has worked at General Smallwood MS and PIccowaxen MS as an Assistant Principal before being transferred to John Hanson MS. Gold earned her Bachelor’s degree from Le Moyne College in Syracuse, NY and has her Master of Education from the University of Virginia. She looks forward to working with the school staff and community to further the students in their endeavors. 

Philip Jones
Assistant Principal 

Philip Jones graduated from Adian College in 2001 with a degree in Earth sciences and teaching certification in secondary Earth science and general science.   He conducted his student teaching at the Kenwood Academy in Chicago, while studying with the Urban Life Center in the Hyde Park neighborhood.  Jones began teaching with Charles County Public Schools in 2004 as an Earth space science teacher at Thomas Stone High School.  Throughout his tenure he also taught biology and various classes within the PLTW Biomedical Sciences program.  Jones spent numerous summers as a science teacher for the Interlochen Arts Camp in northern Michigan.   Jones received a masters degree from Mississippi State University in Earth science education and certification for school administration from McDaniel College. In 2014, Jones began working in school administration and has been in the position at Hanson since 2019. 

dychon whitaker

Dychon Whitaker, Ph.D.
Assistant Principal

Dychon Whitaker, Ph.D., was named eighth-grade assistant principal at John Hanson Middle School in 2022.  Whitaker began her career with Charles County Public Schools in 2012 as a social studies teacher at Westlake High School. She served in the same position with Prince George’s County Public Schools prior to her tenure. Whitaker’s leadership experience includes serving as the administrative intern at La Plata High School for two years.  Whitaker earned a doctor of philosophy degree in cognition and instruction.  She also holds a master of arts in teaching. She began her post-secondary education at Salisbury University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and Bachelor of Science degree in biology. She enjoys working with all stakeholders to foster positive change within the school community. 

kimberle johnson

Kimberle Johnson
Administrative Intern