The St. George’s School Board of Trustees earlier today (December 9th) the appointment of Alexandra “Alixe” Callen as their 12th head of school. Callen will become the first female to lead St. George’s when she begins her tenure on July 1, 2017.
Callen, the head of the upper school at Lakeside School in Seattle, Wash., since 2013, has extensive leadership experience in both independent and public schools. Prior to Lakeside, she was the principal of Acton-Boxborough High School in Acton, Mass., from 2008-2013, and the assistant principal of Needham High School from 2004-2008. Callen holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Brown University and a master’s degree and doctorate from Harvard University.
“I am delighted and honored on behalf of the board and our school community to welcome Alixe Callen into the St. George’s family,” said Chair of the St. George’s Board of Trustees, Leslie B. Heaney. “Alixe is a brilliant educator who has devoted her entire career to fostering the academic success and personal well-being of her students. We are confident that under her leadership, St. George’s will continue to thrive and fulfill its mission: to nurture our students so that they may discover their particular talents, to prepare them for a successful college experience, and to encourage them to lead lives of constructive service to others.”
In accepting her appointment, Callen said: “I am honored and humbled to be asked to serve as St. George’s next head of school. The chance to lead this highly professional faculty is a tremendous opportunity. To do so with the endorsement of a dedicated and supportive board is icing on the cake.”
When she arrives on the Hilltop next summer, Callen will be joined by her husband, James “Ace” Bailey, and their sons Zander, 18, and Miles, 14. “Throughout the search process I have been impressed by each and every person I have met,” Callen added. “Honestly, I am hoping the time flies between now and July 1!”
Heaney recognized current Head of School Eric Peterson and his wife Krista, senior associate director of admission, for their dedication and nearly 13 years of leadership of the school. “Eric and Krista have done so much to make the school we love the academically exceptional and warm and nurturing community that it is today. The Petersons will indeed be missed, but we are thrilled to have Alixe and her family join our community and look forward to welcoming them this summer,” she said.
In a letter to the St. George’s Community; Tad Van Norden, Chair of Search Committee, and Leslie Heaney, Chair of the Board of Trustees, said’
Dear St. George’s Community,
It is with great pleasure and pride that we announce, on behalf of the Board of Trustees, the appointment of Alexandra “Alixe” Callen as the 12th Head of St. George’s School. Alixe will become the first female Head of School at St. George’s when she assumes her responsibilities on July 1, 2017.
Alixe, currently the upper school director at Lakeside School in Seattle, has distinguished herself throughout her career as a highly regarded intellectual, as well as a warm and caring leader and colleague. She brings with her not only a personal record of academic excellence, but also a rich and impressive background in both public- and private-school leadership. Alixe, a graduate of Milton Academy, holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Brown University, along with a master’s degree and a doctorate from Harvard University, where she was mentored by the educational visionary Ted Sizer and assisted with graduate-level courses in secondary-school design, school reform and school leadership.
Prior to her move to Lakeside, Alixe served as the principal at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School in Acton, Massachusetts, from 2008-2013 and as an assistant principal of Needham High School in Needham, Massachusetts, from 2004-2008. During those years, she lived on campus at Middlesex with her husband and their sons, Zander and Miles, now 18 and 14 years old. She served as a dorm parent alongside her husband, James “Ace” Bailey, during his tenure as Middlesex’s Assistant Director of Admission. As such, Alixe already has strong ties to New England — and incidentally to the Hilltop, as four of her relatives graduated from St. George’s: her great-grandfather, Johns H. Congdon ’03; grandfather, James B. Congdon ’41; great uncle, Charles B. Congdon ’40; and uncle, James B. Congdon Jr. ’66.
As the search committee — comprised of trustees, parents, faculty and alumni — sought to find the candidate that best fit our community and vision for the future, Alixe stood out among many highly qualified and exceptional candidates. We are confident that she will steer the course boldly for St. George’s, continuing to build on our long-standing strengths while at the same time moving St. George’s confidently into the future. She is fully prepared and eager to build upon our forward-thinking curriculum, to foster our safe and welcoming community, and to support our teachers in continually expanding their expertise in teaching and learning. “My entire career has been spent helping teenagers to be kind, to watch out for each other, and to be contributing community members,” she said. “To now do that work in a school that has such deep roots for my family makes me humble and proud.”
As a school that is both rich in tradition and dedicated to innovation, St. George’s has reached a period in our history where the future gleams bright and ripe with possibility. Thanks to the leadership and devotion of Eric and Krista Peterson over the last 12 years, the school will be stronger than it ever has been when Alixe and her family join us on the Hilltop next summer.
Source: St. George’s School
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