Our Contributors

Deb head shotDeb Otey, Head of Upper School

Head of Upper School Deb Otey joined Cannon in 2011. Prior to Cannon, she served as a teacher, lower and middle school division head, curriculum director, and assistant superintendent. Deb and her husband Rex are parents to two boys here at Cannon.

Fun fact: A West Virginia native, Deb is an avid fan of the WVU Mountaineers and pepperoni rolls.

 headshotAmy Reiss, Marketing and Communications Manager

Amy is the Marketing and Communications Manager at Cannon School. She began her career in the classroom and taught fourth grade for eleven years before becoming a freelance contributor for The Charlotte Observer in 2007. She has written for local, national, and international publications, and worked at a content marketing company prior to coming to Cannon in 2014.

Fun fact: Amy once mistook David Letterman for her brother’s baseball coach in a grocery store.

Bill Diskin, Director of Admission and Financial Aid

Bill is Director of Admission and Financial Aid at Cannon School.  Over his 20-plus years working in independent schools, he’s been an English teacher, field hockey and lacrosse coach, and athletic director. Originally from Pittsburgh, Bill lives in Charlotte with his wife, Nicole, and three of their children.

Fun fact: Bill was the poet laureate of York, PA from 2002 to 2004.


Ellen G., Class of 2017

Ellen came to Cannon in 7th grade. She recently started playing golf, is a former volleyball player, and also has a fashion and beauty blog. Ellen enjoys math class and finds AP Environmental Science extremely interesting.

Fun fact: Ellen hopes to write a column one day for a fashion and beauty magazine, or go into the fashion or beauty industry in general.

Jessica-BlogJessica Shirey, Cannon School Parent

Jessica is a current parent at Cannon School who lives in Concord. Jessica is a home-based Travel Consultant and she is originally from the Pittsburgh, PA area. Her husband and son, Arv and Will Vasudevan, think that her blogging qualifications are based on her daily parenting misadventures more than her educational and professional background.

Fun fact: Jessica is an independent schools lifer and attended Valley School of Ligonier as a day student and Garrison Forest School as a boarding student.