We are excited to begin the search for Charles River School's next outstanding leader, someone who will undoubtedly and passionately support the school's mission and inspire students to achieve, on our campus and beyond.

The Trustees have formed a Search Committee comprised of members of the Board, current and past parents, faculty, alumni, and senior administrators. The Search Committee has partnered with Resource Group 175 (RG 175) and looks forward to engaging the community in the search process. 

Frequently Asked Questions

List of 9 frequently asked questions.

  • Will CRS’s Mission or Philosophy change with a new Head of School?

    No. The School’s mission has been thoughtfully developed and evolved over time. An important factor in evaluating the next Head of School will be the degree to which candidates understand, support, and can enhance our mission.
  • What firm is supporting the search process?

    The Search Committee has engaged Resource Group 175 (RG175) to partner with CRS on our head of school search. Consultants Jerry Katz and Tony Featherston will facilitate and support our search process.

    About Jerry: Jerry Katz has spent 36 years as a school leader in both public and independent schools. Most notably, he served for 20 years as head of school at The Park School, a PreK to Grade 8 independent school in Brookline, Mass.

    In addition to his direct work with children, teachers, and parents, Jerry has had a long-standing commitment to the development of aspiring and new school leaders. He has served as Associate Director of the Principals Center at Harvard Graduate School of Education, and he has had the opportunity to coach and support many new school leaders both as an Instructor in the School Leadership Program at Wheelock College in Boston and as a member of the faculty of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) Institute for New Heads.  During six years of service on the NAIS Board of Trustees, Jerry participated on, and later chaired, the Board’s Equity and Justice Committee. Throughout his career, Jerry has been a persistent advocate for the importance of equity, justice, and inclusion in schools.  

    A good listener, clear thinker, and strong writer, Jerry sees himself as a lifelong learner and student of school culture. Following his long career in Boston, he served most recently as the head of a Reform Jewish independent school in New York City, where he remained a steadfastly committed Red Sox and Patriots fan.  

    A proud husband, dad, and grandfather, Dr. Katz attended the University of Michigan, earned a Master's degree at Boston University, and completed his doctorate at Harvard Graduate School of Education.  

    About Tony: Tony Featherston has been a leader in independent school education for 30 years. As a longtime faculty member for the NAIS Diversity Leadership Institute and for five years as the lead facilitator of the Institute for New Heads, he has extensive experience cultivating leaders in schools. Tony has served on several school and association boards and currently sits on two: Pine Point School in Connecticut and Tabor Academy (his alma mater) in Massachusetts. His leadership in the area of diversity and inclusion and as a regular presenter at the People of Color Conference informs his work in schools, with school leadership, and boards of trustees. During his career in schools, Tony especially enjoyed nurturing a strong school culture. While missing that ability to be deeply entrenched in a single school’s culture, he enjoys his current consulting role for the ability to have impact on the culture of independent schools broadly.

    Tony spent 12 years in headship at Elmwood Franklin School in Buffalo and The Town School in Manhattan. Prior to his headships, he held senior administrative positions at Pine Point School, Kent Denver School, and Concord Academy. Tony started his career at Concord as a history teacher, dorm parent, and coach. He received his BA from Boston College and MAT from Brown University.
    Since joining RG175 in 2018, Tony has completed head of school searches in New York City, New England, the South, and on the West Coast. He has also done searches for division heads and directors of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • What is the timeline for the search?

    The current plan is to be able to announce the appointment of a new Head of School by June 2022. The new Head will assume responsibility on July 1, 2023.
  • What is the role of the Board of Trustees in the search?

    The Board is responsible for selecting the Head of School. This is one of the most important roles that the Board plays for CRS. The detailed task of conducting the search will be undertaken by a Board designated Search Committee.
  • How were Search Committee members selected?

    Search Committee members share a deep appreciation for CRS’s mission.  They include individuals who offer a diverse set of experiences and points of view as well as a strong degree of commitment to and involvement in the school community.
  • What is the role of the Search Committee?

    Initially, the Search Committee is charged with defining the qualities required of the next Head of School. As the process moves forward, they will review candidate files, interview the most viable candidates, speak with multiple references, and make a final recommendation to the Board of Trustees.  
  • Will the Head of School search impact student experience?

    No. Gretchen Larkin will remain Head of School until June 30, 2023, and the Head of School search will have little or no visibility with students.
  • How will the Search Committee keep the community updated?

    There will be periodic communication from the Search Committee throughout the process. It is important to note that most of the search process must be confidential, and that will shape early communications.
  • How can I help during the search?

    Broad community input will be critical to facilitating a successful leadership transition.  All community members will have an opportunity to complete an online survey this fall, and we will be providing forums for faculty, staff, and parents to meet with finalist candidates later in the process.  Here are some further ways in which you can help:
    • Please make sure our search consultants are aware of any individuals whom you would recommend as potentially strong candidates.   
    • Please bring any rumors or speculation directly to the Search Committee to minimize the spreading of any inaccurate information.  
    • Finally, please read carefully any communications from the Search Committee.

Search Committee

Tracy Bain P'18 '22, Trustee

John Ehlinger P'18 '20 '22, Trustee

Nia Jacobs, Director of Equity, Belonging, and Community Life

Leslie Jackson Judge ‘91 P'24 '26, President of the Board of Trustees, serving Ex Officio
 
William Kantrowitz '03  
 
Lindsey McElligott P'25 '27 '30

Rachel Miller, Grade 5 Co-Teacher and Grades 3-5 Cluster Coordinator
 
Kate Paglia P'27 '30, Trustee, Chair of the Parent Association 
 
Fred Ramos P'22 '24, Trustee 
 
Joanna Travis P'19 '21, Trustee, Search Committee Chair

Nakia Tull P'30

Julie Weeden, Grades 3-8 French Teacher and Middle School Coordinator
 
Dudley Willis P'88 '89 '92 '94 GP'23 '30
Charles River School is a PreKindergarten through Grade 8 independent school that honors the pursuit of academic excellence and the joy of childhood. We nurture each child by igniting curiosity, encouraging creativity, and cultivating intellectual engagement. Our graduates know themselves, understand others, and shape the future of our diverse world with confidence and compassion.

Charles River School admits students of any race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin in administration of its educational or admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.