Alumni Spotlight: Sam Gainor, Class of 2008

SBS Alumnus Sam Gainor has stayed connected to StoneBridge School since he graduated in 2008.

It would be hard for him not to—his mother, Kathy Gainor, has been a familiar face at the school since 2000, and currently serves as the Director of Lower School Student Support Services. His vivacious wife, Sara (Garth) Gainor, a 2010 alumna, has been serving as the Director of Admissions since June, and the couple’s energetic 5-year-old daughter, Maddie, is in Kindergarten. Sam and Sara started dating in 2009 while she was a senior; they married in 2015.

Even without the family ties, Sam’s passion and love for StoneBridge are apparent. Over the years, he has stayed in touch with many of his classmates, while reconnecting with several others.

“I look back and see that some of my most defining times as a young man were shaped by the friendships forged at StoneBridge,” Sam said. “These friends are the ones I grew up with and shared both laughter and tears, joy and sorrow.”

Without the environment of StoneBridge, he said he “wouldn’t have had the chance to grow these friendships – whether through the fun retreats at Rockbridge, the trip through Europe, or even the stressful moments of thesis.”

Sam attended Old Dominion University and graduated from Life University in Georgia with a bachelor of science degree in Biology and a doctorate in Chiropractic.

“StoneBridge prepared me for college by providing the strong work ethic needed to succeed. I was shown and taught servant leadership, which promotes true growth and success,” he said.

Energetic, down-to-earth, and friendly, Sam followed his servant-based calling and is now a chiropractor with Olde Towne Family Chiropractic in Portsmouth, Virginia. He credits his SBS mentor with some sound advice: start with the end in mind, know your “why,” and work relentlessly toward your goal. Sam, Sara, and Maddie currently attend Coastal Virginia Church (CoVA) in Norfolk, where he serves in the Children’s Church.

“Never stop seeking God’s will for your life, and when it is revealed, be ready and willing to walk in your calling,” he advises. “Also, never try to do life alone; stay rooted in your church community so that you may thrive.”

Sam hopes to see StoneBridge continue to grow so the school can be a blessing to other families as it has his. He sees alumni involvement as a key to this growth.