Kim Leipham Freedman Appointed Head of School

  December 23, 2016   Dear New Garden Friends School community, It is with great enthusiasm [ ... ]



Head Search Information 

In June 2016, the Board of Trustees announced that the NGFS community would begin the Head search process. The goal is to select a new Head of School for the 2017­-18 school year. However, it is imperative to find the right person for NGFS so if additional time is needed to achieve this goal the search process will be extended. In August, the Board of Trustees selected Jacob Dresden with Carney, Sandoe and Associates to consult with us in the search.

For the 2016-17 school year, Terry Aiken, Director of Student Affairs, and Kim Freedman, Director of Admissions, will serve as Acting Co-Heads. The appointment of Kim and Terry along with the strength of the administrative team, will allow the school to continue to move forward during the leadership transition and search for a permanent Head of School.

Timeline for Search Process


Mid-October: Potential candidates information shared with Search Committee
Early November: Search Committee meets to evaluate candidates for interview
Mid-November: Initial interviews of candidates from which campus interviews will be selected
Early to Mid-December:  Finalists visit campus to meet with all constituencies
Late December: Committee presents recommendation to the Board of Trustees

Head Search Committee 

Erin Brownlee Dell, co-clerk - Board of Trustees, Middle School Parent
Lore Fariss, co-clerk - Director of Advancement
Jeff Bills - Director of Auxiliary Programs
Molly Haile - Middle and Upper School Parent
Sherrie Harmon - Rainbow (1st and 2nd Grade) Teacher, Alumni parent 
Tanisha Jones - Middle School Teacher
Peter Kalajian - Upper School Teacher
Linda Nelson - Board of Trustees, Alumni parent
Cathy Propst - Lower School Parent
Jon Raper - Middle School Teacher, Lower School parent, Alumnus (8th grade)
Jason Roghelia - Board of Trustees, Lower School parent

Acting Co-Heads

Terry Aiken, Director of Student Affairs,
Kim Freedman, Director of Admissions,

Find out more about Terry and Kim.


Opportunity Statement for Head of School Position


Synopsis of Meetings

September 20, 2016
The search committee gathered this week to review the survey responses in detail and develop a streamlined matrix of desired values and experiences to use in reviewing prospective candidates for interviews. In addition, we spent time reviewing an actual, redacted dossier from another search to help us understand what we would be reviewing and how to best approach the diverse information we would receive. We will meet again on October 5 to further refine our evaluation tool and process and begin discussing prospective candidates. 

Sept. 16, 2016
At the Parent Forum, the search committee shared a summary of responses to our Head Search questionnaire. View it here. Please feel free to contact any member of the search committee with questions and feedback at any time throughout the search. Thank you for your support as we strive to find an outstanding leader for our school.

Sept. 7, 2016
The agenda for the second gathering was geared toward building consensus based on community feedback as well as the Board about the type of candidate that we would be considering and what were our priorities as far as education, experience, and leadership style. We took an actual redacted dossier of a real candidate and discussed our reactions and thoughts. We will continue to meet regularly to prepare for the review of potential candidates from Jake in October.

August 25, 2016
The committee held its first meeting to discuss its role and charge from the Board of Trustees. In a conference call with Jake Dresden, Search Consultant, we reviewed the timetable for the search and proposed schedule. Jake presented an encouraging message about interest in the position and explained how he would be screening potential candidates throughout the next month.

November 17, 2016

The Search Committee has been hard at work in the last few weeks. We have reviewed a substantial number of dossiers from interested individuals for our Head of School role. Ultimately, we invited 7 candidates for confidential off-site interviews with the committee. We have completed these interviews with seven incredibly talented and experienced individuals.  We have discerned the candidates that we will be inviting as finalists to visit the school and community the first few weeks of December. After we complete the details of their visits, we will be sharing details about each candidate as well as a schedule of events and opportunities for the community to meet them and learn more. The members of the Committee are looking forward to hearing from our parents and staff and others about each candidate after their visits. In conjunction with Carney Sandoe and Jake Dresden, our search consultant, we will be providing an online survey that will be available to share your individual feedback. Thank you in advance for being an integral part of greeting our finalists and learning more about the ways in which they could contribute as our next Head of School.


We're grateful for your interest in the transition process and for your continuing support of New Garden Friends School. We will continue to post updates here for our community as they're available.