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It’s Official: Quentin McDowell Named Eighth Head of School

This spring, Mercersburg Academy’s Board of Regents unanimously voted to appoint Quentin McDowell P ’25 as Mercersburg’s eighth permanent head of school.

McDowell had served as acting head of school since June 2021. His appointment comes at the end of a comprehensive process during which the Board met with students, faculty, staff, alumni, parents, and trusted advisers. As part of this process, the Board engaged a national consulting firm that specializes in head of school searches to conduct in-depth interviews and conversations with nearly 150 members of the Mercersburg community. After an extensive evaluation of the national independentschool landscape, and in consultation with the search firm’s findings, it became abundantly clear that McDowell is the right fit to lead the school, both now and in the future.

“We are tremendously pleased with the Board’s selection of Quentin to be the next head of school,” said Kristin Butterfield Vickery ’88, P ’18, ’22, a member of the search committee and White Key co-chair. “As a parent and an alum, I am confident that Quentin, with his incredibly warm persona, dynamic leadership style, and devotion to our school community and its traditions, is the right person to lead Mercersburg and to put into motion the school’s robust new strategic design.”

McDowell has been a valued member of the Mercersburg family since 2007. Prior to accepting the acting head of school position, he served Mercersburg in various capacities, including associate head of school for external relations (2019-2021), assistant head of school for enrollment (2016-2019), senior associate director of admission and financial aid (2012-2016), director of summer and extended programs (2008-2012), and history teacher (2007). McDowell was also the head boys’ varsity soccer coach for eight years, leading the Blue Storm to its first-ever Mid-Atlantic Prep League championship and the PAISAA state championship game in 2014.

As Board President Stacie Rice Lissette ’85, P ’14, ’14, ’17, ’23 wrote in her letter to the school community announcing McDowell’s appointment, “With Quentin at the helm, Mercersburg is well-positioned to move forward as a leader in the world of education with its bold new strategic design and campus master plan.”

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