New England Leadership Appointments

  • Catholic Academy of Bridgeport (Bridgeport, CT )

    Angela Pohlen Executive Director, Appointed for 2019

    This fall Angela leaves Christ the King School of Burlington, VT where she has served as Principal since 2013 to become the next Executive Director for Catholic Academy.  Angela began her career in 1995 in Los Angeles where she spent a decade holding various Assistant roles in the Entertainment Industry, including the Drew Carey Show, Flying Tiger Films, and Fox Latin American Channel.  She entered the education world in 2005 where she was an Elementary Teacher at American Martyrs School in Manhattan Beach. After three years she transitioned to Vice Principal.  In 2010 she served three years as Principal of St. Mary's School in Middlebury, VT. Before starting at Christ the King she served a year as Interim Assistant Superintendent of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Burlington, VT. Angela holds a BA in Communications as well as an M.Ed in Catholic Inclusive Education both from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.

    Serving 900 students from diverse backgrounds, the 4 campuses of the Catholic Academy of Bridgeport all share one common mission: to provide a superior education in a faith-filled learning environment that nurtures the whole child—mind, body and spirit. In each of the schools you’ll find high academic standards and expectations for all, small class sizes and personal attention from dedicated teachers, safe learning environments that foster kindness and respect, and a Christ-centered culture that shapes personal and moral character.

  • Deerfield Academy (Deerfield, MA)

    John Austin Head of School, Appointed for 2019

    Deerfield Academy will welcome John Austin as its next Head of School in the fall of 2019. John leaves King's Academy in Jordan where he has served as Headmaster since 2010. Prior to that appointment he held a 23-year tenure at St. Andrew's School in Delaware where he served many roles including Coach, Teacher, Class Advisor, Department Chair, Associate Dean, Dean of Students and most recently Academic Dean. He has also held roles as an American Literature, Logic & Rhetoric Instructor at Columbia University and as a College Board Reader for the English Literature Advanced Placement Exam in San Antonio, Texas. A graduate of the Middlebury College Bread Loaf School of English, John holds a BA from Williams College and an MA and Ph.D from Columbia University.

    Founded in 1797, Deerfield Academy is one of the premier independent schools in the country. As a co-educational boarding and day school, on a 280 acre campus in historic Deerfield, MA, Deerfield prepares talented students for highly selective colleges and lives of leadership and service. Deerfield is a school where the style, tone, and character of the Academy are shaped in large part by its traditions. The Academy’s 630 students live and learn in an atmosphere of warmth and support, which is to a great degree derived from the friendships among students and with the faculty.


  • Esperanza Academy (Lawrence, MA)

    Jadihel Taveras Head of School, Appointed for 2018

    Jadihel comes to Esperanza Academy after serving two years as Dean of Multicultural Education, teacher, coach and advisor at The Governors Academy in Byfield, MA.  Previously, he served as the Associate Dean of Students at The Putney School in Vermont. There he also severed as an Advisor, Coach, Dorm Parent, and Seminar Instructor.  Jadihel began his career as a Program Manager for the Foundation of Sustainable Development in Bolivia. Before transitioning to Independent Schools he designed and created a study abroad program based on social identity through music, religion and race in the contemporary Dominican Republic. He holds a BA in Political Science from Siena College in New York and an MA in Intercultural Service, Leadership and Management from SIT Graduate Institute in Vermont.

    Esperanza Academy is a tuition free, independent middle school in the Episcopal tradition welcoming girls of diverse faiths, races and cultures from Lawrence, Massachusetts. The school is 100% privately funded and replies on the generosity of its donors. Students are admitted through a lottery to ensure all girls have an equal opportunity to access the exceptional education provided by the school. The four years that our girls spend on campus at Esperanza, from the ages of 10-14, are a time of tremendous physical, emotional, personal, and academic growth.

  • New England Science & Sailing Foundation (NESS) (Stonington, CT)

    Eric Isselhardt Executive Director, Appointed for 2020

    NESS is proud to announce Eric Isselhardt as their next Executive Director effective Summer 2020. Eric comes to NESS after serving as President and Acting CEO at the National Network of State Teachers of the Year. Most recently before that, he served as Chief Executive Officer at Calvert Education where he led the design and development of an inquiry-based blended and virtual international high school system, and as Chief Academic Officer at Green Street Academy Foundation where he designed a project-based learning curriculum tied to Common Core standards. Eric has also served as Dean/Faculty Director of Norwood School in Maryland, CEO of The Kingsbury Center in D.C., University Supervisor at Johns Hopkins University, Headmaster at Norbel School in Maryland, Headmaster at Scenic Land School in Tennessee, Special Assistant to the Dean at State University of New York, Albany, and Vice President of Southern Vermont College. Eric holds a BA from Bennington College in Vermont, as well as an MS and Ph.D both in Educational Administration and Policy Studies from State University of New York at Albany.

    NESS is an ocean adventure nonprofit that provides STEM-based education programs, on and off the water, for students from all walks of life. NESS uses sailing, marine science, power boating, and adventure sports as teaching platforms. NESS operates year-round with families, schools, and organizations to provide high-quality programs that blend an innovative curriculum with exciting ocean adventure activities.

  • Northfield Mount Hermon School (Northfield, MA)

    Brian Hargrove Head of School, Appointed for 2019

    Brian will be NMH's new Head of School starting Summer 2019. He leaves Mercersburg Academy in PA where he has served as Assistant Head of School for Advancement, and Assistant Head of School for Advancement & Communications respectively since 2012. Previously, he served as Director of Development at St. Mark's School of Texas from 2004-2012 and Associate Director of Capital Giving at Gettysburg College from 1993 to 1999. Prior to entering the world of Independent Schools he held several roles in the private sector and for-profit world including Analyst for Wildgrove Incorporated, Vice President & Partner for Heyman Associates, Founder of Earth Yard Company and Account Executive for PCI Data Company.  Brian holds a BA from Gettysburg College, an MBA from Texas State University, and an M.Ed from University of Pennsylvania.

    Northfield Mount Hermon School, commonly referred to as NMH, is a co-educational college-preparatory school for 655 boarding and day students in grades 9–12 and postgraduates from 58 different countries. NMH is a selective school with an acceptance rate of 32%. The school is located on 215 acres the banks of the Connecticut River, with the majority of the campus being located within the towns of Bernardston, Northfield and Gill, Massachusetts.



  • Pike School (Andover, MA)

    Ashley Marshall Head of School, Appointed for 2020

    Pike School is thrilled to announce Ashley as the seventh Head of School effective July, 2020.  Ashley departs The Lovett School in Atlanta, where she has been leading a division of 500 students and 80 faculty with a focus on growth mindset, equity and curricular innovation. In addition, as a staff member of the National SEED (Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity) Project for two years, she focused her efforts on developing more equitable and globally informed schools and communities. Ashley has also held roles as Interim Early Childhood Director at Charlotte Country Day School and Teacher and Director of Lower School Community Service Committee at the Spence School in New York. Ashley graduated from Simmons College where she earned a BA in English and Elementary Education. She subsequently earned a MA in Elementary Education from the Teachers College at Columbia University, as well as an M.Ed in Private School Leadership from the Klingenstein Center, Teachers College of Columbia University, where she currently remains a faculty member for the Summer Institute for Early Career Teachers.

    Established in 1926, Pike is an independent, coeducational day school located on 35 woodland acres in Andover, MA.  A Pike education is a journey that prepares students to be independent learners and responsible citizens. Home to 449 boys and girls in grades PK-9, students develop a lifelong love of learning, respect for others, the joy of physical activity, and a creative spirit.

  • Renbrook School (West Hartford, CT)

    Matthew Sigrist Head of School, Appointed for 2019

    Renbrook School will welcome Matthew Sigrist in the summer of 2019 as its next Head of School. Sigrist leaves the Norfolk Academy (Norfolk, VA) where he has served as the Middle School Director since 2014. Sigrist began his career in education at Delbarton School (Morristown, NJ) where he taught Middle School Algebra and Economics before being appointed as the Head of Upper School at The Peck School (Morristown, NJ). Sigrist holds a Master of Arts degree in Education Leadership from Columbia University-Teachers College (New York, NY) and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Williams College (Williamstown, MA).

    Renbrook School prepares your Preschool to Grade 8 child for success at secondary school and beyond. At Renbrook, your child’s education will be characterized by small classes and personal attention from faculty members. With about 200 students in each of our Lower and Upper Schools from over 40 towns and cities including Simsbury, Farmingoton, Avon and West Hartford, class sizes of 10–15 are typical.

  • Saint Patrick Academy (Portsmouth, NH)

    James Melone Head of School, Appointed for 2019

    Saint Patrick Academy will welcome James Melone in the summer of 2019 as its next Head of School. James leaves St. Gabriel’s Catholic School (Austin, TX) where he served as the Head of Middle School since 2012. Prior to his time at St. Gabriel’s, James began his career as a teacher working first at St. Gertrude School (Bell Gardens, CA) before moving on to St. Austin Catholic School (Austin, TX) and then to St. Mary’s Catholic School (Temple, TX) where he served as Principal for four years. James holds a Doctorate of Education in Leadership from Creighton University (Omaha, NE), a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership and a Master of Education in Elementary Education from University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, IN), and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Saint Anselm College (Manchester, NH).

    Saint Patrick Academy in Portsmouth, NH is a Catholic school that fosters a love for the good, the true, and the beautiful. Students in preschool through eighth grade receive a truly joyful, and holistic private education.

  • St. Thomas Aquinas High School (Dover, NH)

    Dan Soller Head of School, Appointed for 2020

    St. Thomas Aquinas High School is thrilled to announce Dan Soller as their next Head of School effective on February 1, 2020. Dan comes to STA from the University of Saint Francis in Fort Wayne, IN where he served as Chief Student Affairs Officer. Previously,  Dan was the Special Assistant to the President and Director of Athletics at Saint John’s Catholic Preparatory School in Frederick, MD. Prior to this appointment he spent over a decade as the Executive Vice President of Mount St. Mary’s University in Maryland, where he also began his career in 1980 serving as Assistant Dean of Students for four years. Dan has also held several other roles in higher education including Executive Director at The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC, and Vice President for Enrollment & Student Life followed by Executive Vice President/Chief Operating Officer, both at La Roche University in Pittsburgh. Dan holds an AA from Richard Bland College of the College of William & Mary, a BS from James Madison University, and an MS in Higher Education from Southern Illinois University.

    Established in 1960,  St. Thomas Aquinas High School is a caring community, transforming the lives of students through a rigorous Catholic education, guided by the light of the Gospel – developing their unique gifts, strengthening their personal faith and integrity, and fostering within them a commitment to justice, service, and moral leadership. STA is home to 455 boys and girls who learn to embody a mission well-lived.

  • Tower School (Marblehead, MA)

    Serena Wilkie Gifford Head of School, Appointed for 2019

    Tower will welcome Serena this fall as their next Head of School. She leaves Shady Hill School (MA) where she has served a 16-year tenure. First serving as a Teacher, Middle School Gradehead and member of the Curricular Planning Committee, in 2008 she transitioned to Head of the Lower School. Previously she served as President of Cambridge Nursery School (MA) from 2001-2003. Serena has also held roles as Assistant to the Lower School and History/English Teacher at The Nightingale-Bamford School (NY) and History/English Teacher at The Brearley School (NY). Serena holds an A.B. in American Literature from Brown University and an M.Ed in Childhood Education from Bank Street Graduate School of Education.

    Tower School is an independent, co-educational day school for 247 students in pre-kindergarten through grade 8, located in Marblehead, Mass. Tower teaches students to think critically and creatively, to develop joyful curiosity, to embrace challenge and apply their knowledge with confidence, and to thrive within a community rich with diverse perspectives and talents.


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