Dr. Bruce A. Fillman is the Principal of the Virtual Learning Academy. After attending Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he received a Bachelor of Science in Education, a minor in music, and a commission into the United States Army Reserve, he moved to Virginia, where he taught fourth grade in Richmond City Public Schools. Upon completing his second year of teaching, he was deployed to the Middle East as a logistics officer in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Returning from deployment, he joined Chesterfield County Public Schools as a teacher at Bon Air Elementary School and earned a Master of Education in Educational Leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University. He was appointed the assistant principal at Swift Creek Elementary School in 2011 and became principal of J. G. Hening Elementary in 2015. In 2020, he completed his Doctor of Philosophy in the Educational Leadership, Policy, and Justice track at Virginia Commonwealth University in 2020. Dr. Fillman has worked on various district and regional committees, to include policy review committees, the Metropolitan Education Research Consortium, district level equity committees, as well as various other committees. Dr. Fillman believes that learning does not begin or end within the walls of a school, but that learning occurs within each child’s community. This belief necessitates the importance of community partnership to provide the education that our children deserve and need to be successful.
Dr. Bruce A. Fillman
Mr. Patterson is an Assistant Principal for the Virtual Learning Academy. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in History from Hampden-Sydney College in 2006 and his Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from Virginia Tech in 2017. Mr. Patterson taught history and science for 11 years at Manchester Middle School before becoming the Dean of Students at Thomas Dale High School in 2018. He joined the Virtual Learning Academy in the fall of 2021. In addition to teaching and administration, Mr. Patterson has coached football at the high school level and track and field at the middle school level. He and his wife have two boys, a four and a seven year old, and a chocolate lab. In his free time, Mr. Patterson enjoys cheering on the Atlanta Braves, Washington Commanders, and Virginia Tech Hokies. He also coaches youth sports and enjoys getting outside to take advantage of all that Richmond has to offer.
Mr. Patterson believes that every student can achieve academic success through collaboration between home and school. Together, we can ensure that all students at the Virtual Learning Academy achieve academic and social success and the skills to continue as lifelong learners.
Mrs. Perno is the Assistant Principal of the Virtual Learning Academy. She is a proud graduate of Christopher Newport University, Old Dominion University, and Virginia Tech where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in English, a Master’s degree in Elementary Education, and an Education Specialist’s degree with an endorsement in Administration and Supervision. Mrs. Perno began her career as a middle school classroom teacher, teaching English in both Newport News and Poquoson, VA. She also taught 5th grade at Langley Elementary School in Hampton, VA. Upon relocating to Chesterfield, VA, Mrs. Perno taught 4th grade at OB Gates Elementary School before beginning her administrative career as the Dean of Students at Matoaca High School. In addition to her academic and career accomplishments, Mrs. Perno is a wife to her college sweetheart and mother of three, Madison, Emma, and Logan. In her free time, Mrs. Perno enjoys spending time working out at OrangeTheory and playing outside with her kids and two golden retrievers.
Mrs. Perno believes that genuine collaboration fosters ownership of a rich school culture. Supporting our kids to do well at school and in their personal lives is the center of the work we do as a school family. She is honored to be a part of the Chesterfield Virtual School.