Moses Brown Announces New Head of Upper School

After an extensive national search, Elise London has been selected as Moses Brown’s new Head of Upper School. Elise stood out from a pool of very talented candidates due to her experience as a teacher and administrator and her vision for 21st-century Friends education. She will begin her new position on July 1, 2019.

For the past five years, Elise has served as the Associate Director of College Counseling, as well as a teacher, advisor, and dorm parent at St. Mark’s School in Southborough, Massachusetts. Previously she was a teacher, college counselor, and Dean of Students at Carolina Friends School in Durham, North Carolina. Elise holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Williams College, a master’s in Education Administration from Harvard, and is a graduate of leadership programs at Friends Council on Education and the National Association of Independent Schools.

During her interviews, Elise impressed the MB community with her knowledge of school operations and her vision for a student-centered program grounded in Quaker values. She has experience designing and leading immersive learning programs and trips; she is intimately familiar with the college admissions landscape; and she understands best practices in conflict resolution and student leadership development.

Elise’s experience in the area of teaching, pedagogy, and curriculum development is superlative. She has taught English, History, Math, and Science at the high school level, including courses ranging from Advanced Statistics to American Literature. As Chair of the Board of the Independent Curriculum Group, she leads a group of 160 peer schools in reimagining curriculum in alignment with core mission and values, with particular emphasis on high-quality alternatives to AP courses. Elise values teaching that imparts foundational knowledge while also developing students’ creative problem-solving skills, a perfect match for MB’s philosophy and approach.

Elise is also a scholar who has presented nationally on topics ranging from service learning to alternatives to letter grades. Later this month, she’ll be presenting a workshop on maintaining a healthy school culture in a divisive political climate at the NAIS annual conference in California. Perhaps Elise’s greatest strength is her deep familiarity with Friends education and her commitment to creating a culture of trust, joy, and learning directed at making the world a better place for all. She is passionate about helping students develop their unique gifts and talents and creating a culture of equality, where each person feels welcomed, included, and valued. As Elise says, “Schools at their best educate students about the world as it is but also inspire them to create the world they wish to inhabit.”

A marathon runner, Nordic skier, and former cross-country coach, Elise looks forward to supporting MB’s vast co-curricular program and is eager to introduce us to her family.

Several dedicated members of the MB community invested time and energy into the Upper School Head search process, in particular: Kelly Joseph, Adolphe Coulibaly, Lisa Ardente, Oliver Khamky, Steve Toro, and Eric Aaronian, and search committee clerks Debbie Phipps and Gara Field. Their tireless work and thoughtful process over these past months have resulted in an outstanding choice.

Thank you to Dr. Gara Field, Moses Brown’s Director of Global Education & Social Innovation, for her work this year as Interim Head of Upper School.

Please join us in welcoming Elise London to Moses Brown.