Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 05: Governance – Board of Trustees
Series 09: Biography – Trustees

PRESTON LEWIS, Trustee 1993 – 2019

TAGS: Preston Lewis, Lane Lewis, Alvin Boggs, Harlan County schools, special education, PMSS Board of Trustees, Environmental Education, Parkinson’s disease

Preston (right) and Lane Lewis, c. 2019. Source: The State Journal, Frankfort, KY, in an article by Hannah Brown. Photo by Hannah Brown.

Like many Board members throughout Pine Mountain’s history, Preston Lewis brought to the School his professional skills and enthusiasm for the School’s mission. During his longtime board membership from 1993 to 2019, he and his wife Lane generously contributed their time, service and financial support. Almost two decades before he was elected to the Board, Preston and Lane supported the School’s focus on enriching lives through their program of special education for community children.

PRESTON LEWIS: At Pine Mountain Settlement School, 1970s

In the summer of 1974, Preston Lewis and his wife, Lane, worked with the leadership of Pine Mountain to support services for six weeks of summer programming for eight children from Florida. These children came from a special school in Orlando for students with behavior challenges. This led to an additional program for the local community.

Impressed with the program’s success, Director Rev. Alvin Boggs wrote the following in NOTES From the Pine Mountain Settlement School, November 1976:


The dream was dreamed by a young couple who in the summer of 1974 brought a group of [Intervention Program] children from Florida to live at Pine Mountain for six weeks, and were excited by the changes that came about. Why couldn’t they do the same for Harlan County children whose need was as great, whose opportunities were few? A year of further training followed, and a year of special education teaching in Harlan County schools, and all the time they worked towards the goal of having a group of children who were “problems” in their public school come here on the campus to build up their skills and confidence in themselves, hoping to return them to their regular classrooms when they had learned to cope with their individual difficulties.

This year the County school system has let a selected group of children with emotional difficulties come here, have breakfast and lunch in the School dining room, and spend the day in a roomy, bright, carefully planned classroom in the former Girl’s Industrial Building. There each child can be treated as an individual, be part of a small group, play on the playground and come to grips with the business of learning which most of them had shelved as either irrelevant or impossible. How they relish school here, how hard they try to learn, how devoted they have become to these new teachers who are so devoted to them, and who are gently forming in them attitudes and giving them skills which will enable them to rejoin their peers!

Preston and Lane Lewis have not given up their goal of eventually developing a residential program, but are making headway with such opportunity as has come to them. …

NOTES From the Pine Mountain Settlement School, November 1976

PRESTON LEWIS: Trustee, 1993 – 2019

When Preston Lewis resigned from the PMSS Board of Trustees (BOT) in 2019 after 26 years as a member, the following was entered into the minutes for the Board’s Spring 2019 meeting by Helen Hayes Wykle, Board Secretary:

PRESTON LEWIS has been one of the most dedicated trustee in recent memory. His many years of contributions to Pine Mountain Settlement and his love of the institution can be found throughout his years of service. 

Preston joined the Board in 1993 and that makes his service on the Board of Trustees one of the longest of our BOT members. His unswerving contributions to the health and longevity of the institution has been vital to our programming intelligence and our well-being as an institution. Not only did Preston give his professional expertise to the Environmental Education Program, but he also brought his wife Lane, who added her own contributions to the School and its programming objectives. As a couple, they brought their long history with the institution to the table when change threatened to make us vulnerable. They were unwavering in their dedication to the health and future of the School and served to remind the BOT of what service to the institution truly means. The two were regulars at campus events and conscientious contributors to the School at every level of service and giving. For their gifts of time and financial support, we are ever grateful.

2019 PMSS BOT Meeting Minutes SPRING, April 26-27, 2019. Library conference room, Pine Mountain Settlement School, Harlan County, KY.

PRESTON LEWIS: Personal Background

Preston and Lane Lewis were married in 1974 in the chapel at Pine Mountain and moved to Frankfort, Kentucky, in 1985. Preston retired after 27 years with the Kentucky Department of Education, initially as a field service consultant, traveling the state to work with special education programs, and then as manager of the Program Branch of the Division for Exceptional Children. Lane taught for 25 years at Thorn Hill Education Center in Frankfort. Serving as the coordinator for Families Learning Through Interaction Program (FLIP), she worked with children of parents who were studying for their High School Equivalency Certificates (GEDs).

Preston was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2012 at age 63. Since then, he and his wife have been managing a Parkinson’s support group of about 20 participants in Frankfort. Often, professionals are invited to give presentations on various aspects of the disease and, in other meetings, the group members share their own experiences with each other in dealing with Parkinson’s.

Return to Biography – A – Z

TitlePreston Lewis
Alt. Title
CreatorPine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY
Alt. CreatorHelen Hayes Wykle ; Ann Angel Eberhardt
Subject KeywordPreston Lewis ; Lane Lewis ; Intervention Program
children ; Alvin Boggs ; NOTES From the Pine
Mountain Settlement School ; Harlan County
schools ; special education ; Girl’s Industrial
Building ; PMSS Board of Trustees ;
Environmental Education ; KY Department of
Education ; Thorn Hill Education Center ;
Families Learning Through Interaction
Program (FLIP) ; High School Equivalency
Certificates (GEDs) ; Parkinson’s disease
Subject LCSHLewis, Preston, — b. 1949.
Pine Mountain (Ky.) Settlement School — History.
Harlan County (Ky.) — History.
Education — Kentucky — Harlan County.
Rural schools — Kentucky — History.
Schools — Appalachian Region, Southern.
Date2019-09-30 aae
PublisherPine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY
ContributorPreston Lewis ; The State Journal, Frankfort, KY ;
TypeCollections ; text ; image ;
FormatOriginal and copies of documents and correspondence in
file folders in filing cabinet.
SourceSeries 05: Governance – Board of Trustees
and Series 09: Biography – Trustees
RelationIs related to: Pine Mountain Settlement School
Collections, Series 05: Governance – Board of
Trustees and Series 09: Biography – Trustees.
1974 – 2019
Pine Mountain, KY ; Harlan County, KY ; Florida ;
Frankfort, KY ;
RightsAny display, publication or public use must credit
the Pine Mountain Settlement School.
Copyright retained by the creators of certain items
in the collection or their descendants, as stipulated
by United States copyright law.
DescriptionCore documents, correspondence, writings and
administrative papers created by or addressed to
Preston Lewis; clippings, photographs, publications,
illustrations by or about Preston Lewis.
Citation“[Identification of Item],” [Collection Name] [Series
Number, if applicable]. Pine Mountain Settlement
School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain
Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY.
Processed ByHelen Hayes Wykle ; Ann Angel Eberhardt ;
Last Updated10/21/2019 aae ;
Brown, Hannah. “Navigating Parkinson’s:
Get to know support group organizers
Preston and Lane Lewis
.” The State Journal,
Frankfort, KY, 23 September 2019. Internet resource.

“Preston Lewis.” Series 05: Governance –
Board of Trustees and Series 09:
Biography – Trustees. Pine Mountain
Settlement School Institutional Papers.
Pine Mountain Settlement School,
Pine Mountain, KY. Internet resource.