New Head of School


Suzanne Fogarty

August 26, 2019

Dear Chapin Community,

It is our privilege to announce that the Board of Trustees has appointed Suzanne Fogarty as Chapin’s seventh Head of School. Suzanne is currently the Head of School at Lincoln School in Providence, Rhode Island. She is a dynamic and forward-thinking educator with a broad strategic vision who has also embraced the strong traditions of each of the schools at which she has served.

The decisions of the Trustees and the Succession Committee were unanimous. Everyone who met Suzanne agrees that her combination of intelligence, creativity, empathy and passion for girls’ education makes her the ideal choice to succeed the extraordinary Patricia T. Hayot.

Suzanne comes to Chapin with an exemplary record of driving performance, creating innovative programs and fostering collaborations, not only during her five years at Lincoln, but also at three New York City independent schools where she spent more than two decades as a teacher and administrative leader. With instructional experience in all three divisions, Suzanne has created environments in which community members are willing, able and excited to collaborate and innovate to best meet the developmental needs of children in Kindergarten through Class 12.

“It is an honor to be selected to be the seventh Head of School at Chapin,” said Suzanne. “It is exciting to join the Chapin community, a leader in girls' education. So much has been accomplished under the remarkable leadership of Dr. Patricia Hayot. I look forward to learning more from Patricia and building on the extraordinary legacy she will be leaving. My interactions with Board and staff members in the search process clearly reflect Chapin’s commitment to continuing to blaze new directions in girls' education.”

Lincoln School, a Quaker, all-girls K to grade 12 school with a robust coed program for children ages six weeks through PreK, is home to more than 400 students and 100 faculty and staff. The only independent all-girls school in Rhode Island, Lincoln has benefited tremendously from Suzanne’s direction. Working with the Board of Trustees, Lincoln leadership and faculty and staff, she has enhanced the curriculum by forming strategic partnerships with local and global institutions and thought-leaders, and has significantly increased both enrollment and the endowment. Her notable achievements have included: 

  • STEAM-enhancing partnerships with Brown University’s School of Engineering andthe Institute at Brown for Environment and Society, RISD’s School of Architecture, Save the Bay and World Leadership School
  • The launch of Lincoln’s Strategic Advisory Board, comprised of national and international thought leaders, experts, and innovators from business, academia, and government who provide advice and counsel to Suzanne and school leadership to further Lincoln’s mission and broaden its reach
  • Prioritizing diversity and inclusion, building robust programming in all divisions, developing faculty workshops, and increasing frequency of communications to parents
  • Leading an initiative to discontinue the Advanced Placement program in 2016 (as she had done earlier at Berkeley Carroll) in order to enhance the advanced curriculum, and to increase STEAM offerings across divisions, with electives, clubs and required classes
  • Launching Upper School programs to India and Cuba and the Grade 8 Global Citizenship program 
  • Completing a successful 10-year NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc.) accreditation in February 2019 (similar to our NYSAIS accreditation)

Previously, Suzanne spent 15 years at The Berkeley Carroll School, the last nine as Head of Upper School, where she oversaw 40 teachers and a student body of 240. Prior to this, Suzanne was an English middle- and upper-school teacher and also the English Chair for a year there. Before that, Suzanne was head teacher of 1st and then 2nd grade at Saint Ann’s School in Brooklyn and served as director of the Associate Teachers Program for 1st-3rd grades. Her first teaching position was as an Associate Teacher in the 2nd/3rdgrade, a combined class at the time at The Brearley School.

Suzanne earned a Masters in Elementary Education, Magna Cum Laude, from Bank Street College. She has a B.A. in English and French from Bowdoin College, and is a member of the A.I.S.N.E Board of Trustees (Milton, MA), the Sophia Academy Board of Trustees (Providence, RI), and of the Community Roots Board of Trustees (Brooklyn, NY). She is a frequent presenter, having spoken recently on girls’ education at Private Schools for Public Purpose conference in NYC, at the Global Gathering NYC: Schools of Purpose conference, and at the Wonder Woman Conference: Leadership and Design, among others.

Our new Head of School will take Chapin’s reins at a time of tremendous opportunity, as Chapin’s 56,000 square-foot building expansion is scheduled for completion in 2020. Suzanne will be tasked with continuing Chapin’s forward-focused work in enhancing, developing and implementing programming to fill these spaces and integrating athletics, wellness, arts and other programs with our broader educational mission. With her deep understanding of community and culture, Suzanne is eager to take advantage of the opportunities afforded us with having everyone under one roof at Chapin.

Critical to our success in engaging this extraordinary leader has been the enthusiastic involvement of the entire Chapin community. We would like to take this opportunity to thank the members of the Succession Committee who spent their summer dedicated to this essential undertaking. Representing faculty, administrators, trustees and alumnae are: Robert Baynard, Trustee; James H. Clark, Trustee; Stephanie Coleman ’95, Trustee; Bettina Goldstein Decker ’88, Trustee; Lynette Engel, Middle School Faculty Member; Brian Higgins, Trustee; Beth Kojima, Trustee; Joanna McClure, Trustee ex officio and Chair, Parents' Association; Clarence Mitchell, Trustee; M.J. Quigley, Associate Head of School; Linda Gosden Robinson, Trustee; Russell Silverman, Upper School Faculty Member; and Leia Yongvanich, Lower School Faculty Member. As the search progressed, our three Division Heads— Thérèse Cruite, Head of Lower School; Mary Rafferty, Head of Middle School; and Michael Maloy, Head of Upper School—Ilana Pergam, Director of Academic Program, Erica Corbin, Director of Community Life and Diversity, and other members of the Administrative team met with the finalists. We are appreciative, as well, of the great partnership we enjoyed with the executive search firm Spencer Stuart, led by Mary Gorman and Meaghan Becker.

Invaluable, as well, were the immeasurable contributions from parents, past-parents, alumnae, professional community members and students who shared their thoughts, ideas and concerns through in-person meetings and surveys, allowing us to best articulate the needs and vision of the School to candidates.

As we look forward to welcoming Suzanne next July to 100 East End Avenue, we wish to note how profoundly fortunate and thankful we feel to have Patricia – who will retire in June 2020 after serving with extraordinary distinction at Chapin for 17 years – at the helm for one final and pivotal year. We look forward to sharing the myriad ways we plan to celebrate and extend our deep gratitude to Patricia this year. You won’t be surprised that she has asked how—and suggested many ways—she can best welcome and prepare Suzanne and is already looking into an order for Suzanne’s own personalized Building Chapin’s Future hard hat!

With best wishes for a wonderful 2019-2020 school year ahead and deep thanks for your patience, excitement and support of Chapin.

LeeAnn Black
Chair of the Board of Trustees

Alexa Bator Chae ’90

Kim Karetsky Krinsky ’95
Trustee ex officio & President, Alumnae Association