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Head of School Search


The Mission of Harbor Country Day School:
'Harbor cherishes childhood, cultivates wonder and inspires confident learners and leaders.'

On March 4, 2021, Harbor Country Day's beloved Head of School, John Cissel, announced his retirement, effective June 30, 2022.  Following the announcement, Harbor's Board of Trustees appointed co-chairs for the Head of School Search Committee. The co-chairs, along with the board chair, spoke with four and interviewed three educational leadership search firms to identify one to serve as consultant for Harbor's search.  After careful deliberation and due diligence, the Board hired Educators' Collaborative and its Co-Managing Partner, Jean Lamont, to work with Harbor to manage the search process.

Input from all constituents of our community will assist us in identifying the critical skills, experience and vision necessary to ensure the continued success and future growth of Harbor. Our next leader will be charged with continuing the growth of Harbor's whole child-centered curriculum, while upholding our core values and honoring the school's mission.  Moreover s/he will be working to fulfill the school's fundraising, strategic and master plan goals to ensure a strong foundation for the future of Harbor.

This page will be updated as the search progresses. Please check back regularly throughout the next few months. 



April 2021 - Community Survey & Review Period
April 2021 - Constituent Sessions with Consultant - See Schedule Below
August 1, 2021 - Deadline for Candidate Applications
August/September 2021 - Review and Evaluation of Candidates
September/October 2021 - Finalist Visits to Harbor Country Day School
October 2021 - Selection and Approval of New Head of School

Dates may change due to scheduling issues. Please watch this space.


The Constituent Sessions will be held virtually* and offer members of the Harbor community an opportunity to meet our consultant Jean Lamont who will provide an overview of the search process and answer questions you might have. The primary purpose of the sessions is to solicit input that will inform the drafting of a leadership profile to guide the selection of Harbor's next Head of School. Three questions will be posed: (a) what are the key qualities or strengths that distinguish Harbor and should be preserved going forward? (b) what are the most important challenges and opportunities facing Harbor in the next 3-5 years? and (c) given the core values and the challenges/opportunities, what attributes, qualities and skills do you perceive are needed for the next Head of School?  The Search Committee is grateful for your participation in this important stage of the search process.

Current Parent Sessions
Tuesday, April 13 at 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, April 15 at 12:00 p.m.
Past Parent & Alumni Session
Wednesday, April 14 at 7:15 pm.

*Zoom link and password provided in e-notification shared on March 29, 2021.





Rose Antilus
HCDS Trustee, P'25, 27
Alex Doboli
HCDS Trustee, P’17, 20
Nicole Fotis
Principal of HCDS Upper and Lower School
Bob Gaffney
HCDS Alumnus ‘86
Corinne Hammons
HCDS Board Chair, P’20, 22
Nancy Hickerson
HCDS Board Secretary, P’12, 15
Cynthia Wong Lippe
Co-Chair, Former Board Chair, P21, 24
Adrienne Owen
Co-Chair, Former Board Chair, P'20
Ralph Pepe
HCDS History Teacher, Upper School Advisor and Coach 


To Be Announced