As promised in my letter sent January 14, 2021 announcing John Delautre’s decision to retire in June 2022, I write today to share with you the plans the Board of Trustees has developed to identify and recruit the next Head of School to take office on July 1, 2022. We intend to keep the school community well informed throughout the search process and will be relying on the broad participation of the community to ensure a successful outcome. As part of our commitment to keep the community informed, today we have launched a Head of School Search webpage where we will post information and updates.
The Board of Trustees, which has the ultimate responsibility for selecting the next Head of School, has appointed a Search Committee to conduct and manage the search process for our school’s next leader. The following members of our community have agreed to serve on the Search Committee, which will be chaired by Karen Myers, Trustee (Katherine '13, Sarah '16, Julia '16):
Kinyetta Alexander, Trustee (Chris ’17, Isaiah ’21)
Andy Bryan, Trustee (Whitney ’25, Andrew ’27)
Ron Fox ’74, Trustee (Jeffrey '01, Elizabeth '03, Joanna '07, Nathan '24)
Michele Holton, Trustee (Max '20)
Corey Jones (Taryn ’24)
Phil Levy, Trustee (Morgan '15, Michael '17)
Paul Minorini, Board of Trustees Chair (Anthony '12, Hannah '15, Kate '16)
Steve Nordlund, Trustee (Henry '21, Althea '23)
Melissa Howe O’Connor '08
David Ressner, Trustee (Abby '23)
The Board has retained Educators' Collaborative to help us with our search. This search firm has conducted over 1,000 successful head of school searches since 1971. Leading our project will be Deirdre Ling, senior partner with the firm, and her partner Nat Conard. Both have served as heads of independent schools and are well respected and known by educators throughout the country. Both Deirdre and Nat feel that Whitfield presents an impressive professional opportunity that will attract an excellent pool of candidates.
The success of this search will depend in large part on the input that the Search Committee and the consultants receive from the Whitfield community. Deirdre and Nat will conduct virtual meetings with members of the community in order to develop a leadership profile for Whitfield’s next Head of School and to gain a thorough understanding of the opportunities and challenges facing the next Head. In the days ahead, we will share the schedule for these virtual meetings with Whitfield families, students, faculty, staff and alumni, and invite your participation.
Deirdre and Nat will advertise the position extensively in the coming weeks and access their comprehensive database and professional networks to solicit and encourage applications from well-qualified candidates.
During the next several months, the Search Committee will review applications and, pandemic permitting, invite eight to 10 candidates to in-person, confidential interviews with the Committee. From this group, the Committee will invite the top candidates to the School for two full days of interviews. There will be opportunities for representatives from all constituencies in our community to meet the candidates and provide feedback to the Search Committee. Ultimately, a single candidate will rise to the top and be recommended to the Board for approval.
We are, as always, grateful for your support and will continue to keep you informed about our progress.
Chair, Whitfield School Board of Trustees