Head of School Selection Process
Serena Wilkie Gifford announced her plans to step down as Tower's Head of School in June of 2023. Ms. Gifford is a thoughtful, effective leader who cares deeply about Tower's mission and supporting a culture of belonging for students and families. We will miss Ms. Gifford's tremendous leadership and her joyful connections with students.
Nevertheless, as a 110-year-old institution, we are also a forward-looking community that embraces new perspectives and experiences. We look forward with anticipation to each step in the search process. Especially after reading the following about our candidates.
See below for the timeline set by Tower's Head of School Search Committee.
We are enormously impressed by the breadth of experience, educational philosophy and cultural fit for our school and mission represented by these candidates. Their enthusiasm for joining Tower is a testament to our community, and the reputation for excellence achieved by our faculty and students.
Tower School's Head of School Search Committee
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’s Head of School Search Committee
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
- Eric Gyllenborg P’21, ’23, Board Clerk
- Kate Bracken ’92, P’21, ’23, ’25, Board Member
- Angie Munro ’91, P’26, ’29, Board Member
- Jennifer Vetter P’25, ’28, TSPA President
- Mary Dailey P’31, Faculty, Administrator
- Stephanie Fitzgerald P’27, ’29, Faculty
|✓ 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
|October||Board of Trustees votes to select Tower's Next Head of School|
|November||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|