Finalists Named in Pinkerton Academy Headmaster Search

The finalists for the Headmaster position at Pinkerton Academy have been visiting the campus this week.

The two finalists were chosen by the Headmaster Search Committee of the Board of Trustees. The chosen candidate will succeed Mary Anderson, who will complete her 39-year career at Pinkerton when she retires this spring. Anderson has been Headmaster for 11 years.

The finalists are:

• Christine Heine. Heine is Assistant Head of School and Head of Upper School at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy in Philadelphia. PA. Heine successfully merged the upper schools (grades 9-12) of two top independent day schools in the Philadelphia area. There, she instituted the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership.

Heine holds a doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction from Columbia University. She said she believes in the importance of nurturing the strengths of faculty and students

• Griffin Morse. Morse is the head of School Year Abroad in Spain. The school’s parent organization is headquartered in Boston and operates schools in Italy, France and China. A global educator who speaks three languages, Morse has many relatives in New Hampshire and graduated from high school in the Granite State. He is a long-time teacher who believes in experiential learning. Technologically savvy, Morse started a privately held software company with clients in 38 countries.

Chip Underhill, Pinkerton’s Executive Director of Public Relations, wrote in a press release, “During their respective two-day visits, each finalist will tour campus, observe classes and meet with faculty, staff, administration and local superintendents. The Trustees are arranging opportunities for every member of the Pinkerton faculty and staff to meet the finalists.”

“We have definitely had quite a few very qualified candidates,” Kimberly Smith, trustee and chairman of the Search Committee, said.

Smith said Heine and Morse were chosen in part because of their strong leadership skills. “They each have a wide variety of experience and an excellent vision for the school,” she said. “They both work hard and appear to love a challenge!”

What impressed Smith the most, she said, was “their sincere interest and incredible excitement about coming to Pinkerton.”

Both educators have done their homework, she said, including “daily Googling” of the school and its activities.

“We all feel so strongly about Pinkerton,” Smith said. “It’s been fantastic for 200 years, and it has the potential to be even more so. They’re excited about that potential.”

At the end of the day, Smith said, Heine and Morse emerged as the two most qualified candidates. “They seem ready to take care of our two most important resources, our staff and our students,” she said. “They are sincerely interested in the whole student.”

They are two unique candidates, Smith said, with “similar strengths and unique differences. It will be hard to choose between them.”

But she could see it coming, Smith added. “Carney and Sandoe, our search firm, promised us two things in the beginning: It would be an international search, and it would be a hard decision to make,” she said.