In a special session today, February 12, 2018, The Episcopal School of Dallas Board of Directors voted unanimously to appoint David L. Baad as ESD's third Head of School, effective July 2018. Mr. Baad currently serves as the Associate Head of School for the St. Albans School, one of the nation's oldest and most respected Episcopal schools.
"We could not be more excited for our community to move into the future with Dave Baad at the helm," Don Carty, Chair of the Board of Directors and Co-chair of the Search Committee, said. "He undoubtedly embodies the important qualities conveyed to us through the community-wide survey, thoughtful conversations, and our Faculty and Staff Advisory Council. Dave understands and values our mission of providing our children with a faith-based education that will prepare them for lives of intellectual discovery, integrity, and purpose."
In his 28-year tenure at St. Albans, Mr. Baad has served as a teacher, coach, Director of Athletics and Auxiliary Programs, and Associate Head of School. On two separate occasions, Mr. Baad has been appointed by the Board of Governors to serve as Acting Head of School and understands the complexities of the position. He has held active leadership roles in strategic planning, admissions, budget management, technology, curriculum development, faculty recruitment, and professional development, as well as board governance support for development and finance. Additionally, he has enhanced coeducational opportunities in academics, arts, and athletics via a strong Coordinate Program with the National Cathedral School.
Upon his appointment, Mr. Baad said, "I am deeply honored to be entrusted as the next leader of this great school. I am also grateful for the foundation that has been laid by my predecessors. Father Swann's vision to build an Episcopal school from scratch was extraordinary. Under Meredyth Cole's leadership, ESD solidified its strong reputation in the national independent school landscape. It is upon this remarkable foundation we will build. I resolutely believe that Episcopal schools like ours must wrap all that we do in the moral framework that a faith-based school provides. My goals are to help shape students' lives and to sustain an atmosphere in which teachers can create and excel."
In consultation with the nationally prominent search firm Carney, Sandoe, and Associates, ESD's Head of School Search Committee was led by co-chairs Laura Boeckman and Don Carty. The committee comprised 10 members, current or emeriti board members who are also ESD parents, alumni, or grandparents. To ensure the best possible match, the Search Committee surveyed the entire community and engaged a Faculty and Staff Advisory Council of 11 teachers and administrators across all three divisions. Mr. Baad quickly distinguished himself as an exceptional candidate, which brought six outstanding educators to Dallas from around the country.
"ESD has always believed that a student's long-term success must be grounded in educating the whole child - it was important to the Search Committee to identify an exceptional leader who believes with rigor and excellence, there should be joy and purpose," Laura Boeckman, Search Committee Co-chair, said. "Dave represents the very best of an Episcopal school education - the belief that personal formation comes through moral, spiritual, intellectual, creative, physical, and social development."
Mr. Baad graduated from St. Albans and earned his B.A. in History from Rollins College, where he was a member of the prestigious Omicron Delta Kappa National Leadership Honor Society, and played varsity baseball. He received his M.A. in Organizational Leadership from Teachers College, Columbia University.
Mr. Baad and his wife, Hafida, have one daughter, Kinza. Hafida is an accountant with a D.C. based residential developer and plans to continue her career in Dallas. Hafida was raised in Morocco and is fluent in both Arabic and French. Kinza is a recent graduate of the University of Virginia, where she was a Cavalier softball player. She works in professional scouting for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Meredyth Cole, who has served as ESD's Head of School since July 2013, is relocating to Atlanta, Georgia, this summer. She was named the Lovett School's 13th Head of School in November 2017.
For more information, please visit ESDallas.org/headofschool.