Head of School Selection Process

Serena Wilkie Gifford announced that she will step down as Tower's Head of School in June of 2023. Serena is a thoughtful, effective leader who cares deeply about fostering the culture of Tower and bringing Tower's mission to life for students, families and faculty within our community. While we will miss her tremendous leadership as Tower's Head of School, we are gratified to know of her plans to continue her work as an educator in a role closely connected to children, classrooms, and curriculum. 

The Board of Trustees, in collaboration with consultants at Carney, Sandoe & Associates and Tower's Head of School Search Committee is managing the search for Tower’s next Head of School with an eye toward continuing the essential work initiated under Serena’s leadership. All members of our school community will have opportunities to participate during this exciting time in our extraordinary school's history.

The Head of School position description was produced by Carney Sandoe & Associates in consultation with the Search Committee.

Read the Position Description.


PDF: Head of School Position Description 2022
Logo: Carney Sandoe & Associates

Carney Sandoe & Associates, Search Consultants

The Search Consultants at Carney Sandoe & Associates have extensive experience conducting Leadership Search Services for educational institutions—from independent schools to universities. We have retained executive search consultants, Bob Fricker and Lisa Parsons to join us in managing Tower School's search process. Each brings a wealth of experience and an invaluable network of connections to the process. As a team, they possess a deep understanding of our school culture and community having worked with us in prior searches. 

Tower School Logo

Tower's Head of School Search Committee Members

The search committee is responsible for ensuring a thorough process, vetting potential candidates, and making a recommendation to the Board of Trustees for the final hiring decision. We welcome your thoughts, questions, and suggestions throughout the process and will keep everyone informed. 

  • Alethea McCormick ’89, P’19, ’21, ’23, ’26
    Chair, Board of Trustees; Co-Chair, Search Committee 
  • Jeff Carter P’20, ’25
    Co-Vice-Chair, Board of Trustees; Co-Chair, Search Committee
  • Matthew Velluto P’23, ’26, Co-Vice-Chair of the Board; Chair of the Development Committee
  • Kate Bracken ’92, P’21, ’23, ’25, Board Member
  • Angie Munro ’91, P’26, ’29, Board Member
  • Eric Gyllenborg P’21, ’23, Board Member; Board Clerk
  • Jennifer Vetter P’25, ’28, TSPA President
  • Mary Dailey P’31, Faculty
  • Stephanie Fitzgerald P’27, ’29, Faculty

Preliminary Timetable

Bold type indicates opportunities for community participation.

Month Milestone
March Candidate recruitment, ongoing
March Informal Search Committee meetings with leading candidates, ongoing

Survey sent to faculty and community members  

May 9 & 13

Carney Sandoe & Associates consultants visit Tower


Search committee reviews candidate portfolios and selects semi-finalists


Search committee conducts semi-finalist interviews, selects a set of finalists


Finalists visit Tower individually; faculty and community members meet finalists 


Community members provide feedback to Search Committee


Search committee reviews community feedback, makes reference calls


Search committee makes recommendation to the Board of Trustees

September–October Board of Trustees votes to select Tower's Next Head of School
September–October Letter of Agreement is signed and Tower's next Head of School is announced
June 2023 Serena Wilkie Gifford's final month at Tower
June 2023 Tower's next Head of School officially begins at Tower