Founded to focus specifically on the education sector in executive search, our firm has formed strong partnerships with independent schools from the start.
In recent years, the firm has expanded and cultivated its independent school practice, with a team currently led by Nishant Mehta, Partner and Independent Schools Practice Lead; Sherry Coleman, EdD, Partner; Ruth Shoemaker Wood, PhD, Partner, Shelly Weiss Storbeck, Managing Partner; Lisa Solinsky, Senior Associate; Staci Williams Seeley, Associate; Mark Halligan, Associate; Matthew Marsallo, Senior Associate; and Matthew D'Annolfo, Senior Research Associate.
In 2020, our placements at independent schools included Rodney Glasgow, new Head of School at Sandy Spring Friends School in Sandy Spring, Maryland, Thu-Nga Morris, new Lower School Director at The Pingry School in Short Hills, New Jersey, and Sally Keidel, new Head of School at The Agnes Irwin School in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.
In 2019, our placements at independent schools included Barry Davis, new Head of School of St. Anne’s Episcopal School in Middletown, Delaware, and Camille Seals, new Assistant Head of School for Academic Programs and Inclusive Excellence of The Agnes Irwin School.
In 2018, Eric Osorio joined The Calhoun School in New York City as Associate Head of School for Teaching and Learning, and Matthew S. Kerlin was appointed Head of School of SouthLake Christian Academy in Huntersville, North Carolina.
The Calhoun School
The Calhoun School, a progressive co-educational, independent, college preparatory day school that serves students from 2 years 8 months through 12th grade, welcomed Eric Osorio in 2018 to the new position of Associate Head of School for Teaching and Learning, after a nationwide search led by Sue Bosland, Partner, and Mark Halligan, Associate.
Osorio spent the first 12 years of his career at the Noble and Greenough School outside Boston, where he began as a social studies and English teacher and later was named Associate Director of Admissions and then Dean of Diversity Initiatives. Osorio moved from Nobles to the Packer Collegiate Institute in Brooklyn, where he spent four years as Assistant Head of the Upper School and also taught history. From 2012 to 2015, he served as Dean of Students at Worcester Academy, in Worcester, MA. Before joining Calhoun, he was Associate Head of School at the Swift School in Roswell, GA.
A native New Yorker and alum of Prep for Prep and Horace Mann, Osorio received his BA in sociology from Tufts University, and an MA from Columbia University’s Teachers College, where he was a Klingenstein Fellow.
When we checked in with Calhoun’s Head of School, Steven L. Solnick, in the midst of the 2018-2019 school year, Solnick said, “Eric has already proven to be a vital force in driving collaboration and professional development with faculty and staff across divisions.”
Solnick added, “Eric will play a key role in leading the conversation in the coming years as we lean into developing a competency-based framework for curriculum development and assessment, following a vision outlined in our new strategic plan. And he has played a critical role in faculty and administrative hiring processes that have both expanded the space for faculty input and underscored our commitment to hiring a diverse administrative and instructional team.”
St. Anne’s Episcopal School
In 2019, Barry Davis was appointed Head of St. Anne’s Episcopal School, a co-ed independent day school for children pre-school (age 3) through eighth grade. Previously he served as Middle School Director at Greensboro Day School in Greensboro, North Carolina.
In total, Davis brings 38 years of education experience, having served as an administrator, teacher, and coach at schools that include Brooklyn Friends School (NY), Flint Hill School (VA), the Metropolitan Learning Center, Inter District Magnet School for Global and International Studies and Technology (CT), Worcester Academy (MA). Eastern Connecticut State University, St. Lawrence University, and the University of Dallas.
He earned a B.S. in Physical Education and a M.Ed. in Educational Counseling and Human Development at St. Lawrence University and a M.Ed. in Educational Leadership and School Administration and Supervision at Central Connecticut State University.
Remarking on the success of the search, which was led by Sherry Coleman, Partner, Sue Bosland, Partner, and Lisa Solinsky, Senior Associate, the St. Anne’s board president and search committee chair, Ana Ramirez, said that Davis’s appointment was “the culmination of a search that included qualified candidates from across the nation and around the globe. Ultimately, Barry’s experience as a leader and educator in a variety of school settings, coupled with his values, passions and goals for the St. Anne’s community as well as his vision for its future success made him the clear choice.”
In September 2020, Davis demonstrated creativity, innovation, project-based learning, and "leading through COVID" by reopening St. Anne's for in-person learning using outdoor classrooms on the school's 125-acre campus, as highlighted in this ABC News clip.
The Agnes Irwin School
In 2019 Camille Seals joined The Agnes Irwin School (AIS), a college preparatory school for girls PreK through Grade 12, as Assistant Head of School for Academics and Inclusive Excellence. In this new position, she is responsible for three key areas: academic programming from PreKindergarten through Grade 12 and the corresponding professional development for faculty and staff; equity and inclusion initiatives at AIS; and the Center for the Advancement of Girls, which researches leading girl-centered pedagogies and creates partnerships and programs designed specifically for AIS students.
The search was led by Sue Bosland, Partner, and Sherry Coleman, Partner, and assisted by Lisa Solinsky, Senior Associate.
Seals was previously affiliated with the Hathaway Brown School in Shaker Heights, Ohio, where she served as Director of the school's Aspire Program, an academic enrichment and leadership development program for high-achieving girls, and its Center for Multicultural Affairs.
Seals earned a Bachelor of Arts in English from Spelman College and received a Masters in Education from Tufts University. Additionally, she has participated in a professional development program for new and aspiring school leaders at Harvard University.
Wendy Hill, AIS's former Head of School who oversaw the successful search, praised Seals for her "warmth, clear communication, keen intellect, and extensive experience," qualities that were apparent to faculty, trustees, staff, and students alike.
“Members of the search committee, the Board of Trustees, and I were impressed with Camille's 'can-do' attitude,” Hill added, “and found her to be a thoughtful and strategic thinker who effortlessly and genuinely connected with those she met.”
Later in 2019, the Storbeck team was invited back to The Agnes Irwin School to lead the Head of School search, resulting in the selection of Sally Keidel. Sue Bosland, Sherry Coleman, and Lisa Solinsky also completed AIS's search for a new Lower School Director, resulting in the selection of Elizabeth Elizardi.
New Independent School Clients
Among other recent searches, our firm successfully completed the search for the Director of Equity and Inclusion at St. Luke's School in Connecticut.
Our 2020 clients include Castilleja School, Choate Rosemary Hall, The Hewitt School, The Lawrenceville School, The Northwest School, and The Pingry School.
To learn more about our search work on behalf of independent schools, colleges, universities, and nonprofits nationwide, we invite you to view all of our active searches, as well as all of our completed searches, sortable by institution type, role, and region.
To learn more about our consulting services for independent schools, including consulting on strategy and DEI, as well as leadership and governance coaching and training, please contact Nishant Mehta, Partner and Independent Schools Practice Lead.
As a proud Supporter of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), we look forward to meeting you at the next NAIS Annual Conference and NAIS People of Color Conference.