Episcopal continues search for new Head of School

By Susanna P. Barton –
Resident Community News –

Episcopal School of Jacksonville leaders have started a national search for a Head of School. The search committee expects the chosen candidate to be in place and ready to serve before the start of the 2013-2014 school year.
Ortega resident Rob Clements, Chairman and CEO of EverBank and Episcopal board chair, sent a letter to Episcopal families this summer outlining the progress. The school seeks to replace longtime Head of School, Dale Regan, who died tragically during a campus shooting last spring. Former Head of School Charley Zimmer has been filling in temporarily until a permanent replacement can be found.
Rick Jones, former Episcopal board chair, is heading the search committee. Other trustees on the committee include Clements, Jim Bailey, Steve Busey, Sue Jangro, Dean Kate Moorehead, Lon Walton and Claudia Amlie.  The search committee also is in the process of forming an advisory committee made up of parents, alumni, faculty, staff and students. That group will share input that will help guide the search.
Clements said the search committee also is working with the Association of Episcopal schools and has received guidance and support from the organization, “as well as nominations of specific potential candidates,” Clements added.
The school was founded in the Episcopal tradition and any potential candidate must fully appreciate and understand the nuances and expectations at an Episcopal school,” he explained.
Clements said Regan’s legacy would be an important part of the search process as the school looks into the future.
“The Board of Trustees’ search committee is looking for a strong, inspiring, and experienced educational leader who will appreciate and respect the history, mission, and culture of the school,” Clements said. ” Dale’s legacy is an important one and the new head will build on the wonderful traditions and innovations that she brought and sustained, while helping to prepare the school for its next 50 years.”
In mid-May, the search committee hired national search firm, Princeton, N.J.-based Wickenden Associates to help find potential candidates for the school’s top spot. Wickenden was responsible for the search bringing Zimmer to the school in 1997.
The search firm has been fielding candidates this summer and the search committee plans to select a group of semi-finalists by mid-October. In November, Clements said the finalists will come to the Episcopal campus for two days to meet with members of the community. The announcement of a new Head of School is expected in early-2013, Clements said in his letter.
Clements said there are many upcoming opportunities and changes the new Head of School will face in the school’s new era — including the school’s upcoming 50th anniversary.
“A new head will be integral in setting the tone for the school’s next 50 years,” Clements said. “The school is also looking to improve its athletic facilities, and the new head will be involved in this exciting endeavor as well. We expect all of our finalists will see any challenges as
opportunities.”

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