Head of School Search 2019-20

Head of School Search Updates

May 10, 2019 - Lillian Howard announced as Woodland's Interim Head of School for the 2019-20 academic year.

June 13, 2019 - Search Committee announced.

Announcements from the Board of Trustees

Woodland Board of Trustees Names Lillian Howard Interim Head of School

The Woodland Board of Trustees is excited to announce Lillian Howard as the Interim Head of School for the 2019-20 academic year. Ms. Howard is currently completing a one year term as Interim Head of School at Wornick Jewish Day School in Foster City, CA and previously served as head of school at Kehillah Jewish High School in Palo Alto, CA and The Shoshana S. Cardin School in Baltimore, MD.

Ms. Howard holds a Bachelor of Arts in Humanities/Philosophy from Scripps College, Master of Arts in Classics from the University of Texas at Austin and Certifications from the Jewish Theological Seminary and Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Exhibiting a deep passion for teaching, Ms. Howard has guided students to learn, discover, and thrive in independent school communities for over 25 years. She brings 17 years experience in leadership positions at independent schools ranging from Department Chair to Head of School. In addition to being a successful leader, Ms. Howard has been recognized for her curriculum development and earned multiple Fellowships to study locally and abroad.

Prior to her move to administration, Ms. Howard spent over a decade in the classroom bringing history, English and Latin to life for students in both California and Arizona. She will begin work at Woodland July 1, 2019. Please join us in welcoming Ms. Howard to the Woodland community!

Position Statement

Search Timeline

Please note this timeline is subject to change.

March 2019
Announcement to the community.

April 2019
Engage search consulting firm Resource Group 175 (RG175).
Begin search for Interim Head of School.

May 2019
Form Search Committee.
Consultants visit campus to learn more about Woodland and meet with faculty/staff, administration, students, parents/guardians, alumni, Board of Trustees.
Name Interim Head of School for 2019-20 academic year.
Consultants and Search Committee develop position statement.
Consultants begin outreach for candidates for HOS.

July 1, 2019
Interim Head of School begins.

June - August 2019
Consultants continue outreach to candidates.
Consultants update Search Co-Chairs on progress.
Committee reviews candidate files.

Late Summer/Early Fall 2019
Search Committee interviews semifinal candidates.

Fall 2019
Final candidates visit campus.
Search Committee makes recommendation to the Board of Trustees. 

Before Thanksgiving 2019
Board of Trustees announces appointment of the new Head of School.

Winter - Spring 2019-20 
Transition planning for new Head of School.

June 30, 2020
Interim Head of School's final day as Head of School.

July 1, 2020 
New Head of School begins at Woodland.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long will the Interim Head of School (HOS) search last? 
The interim head of school search takes between 4-8 weeks. Our goal is to select an interim head of school by May 15, 2019. The interim head of school will start on July 1, 2019.

How long will the Head of School (HOS) search last? When do you expect to hire the next HOS?
A head of school search takes between 6-12 months. Our goal is to select a new head of school before Winter 2019. The new head of school will start on July 1, 2020.

What is the role of the Search Committee? 
The Search Committee, along with the search consultant firm RG175, is tasked with directing the new Head of School search process from start to finish. The Committee will coordinate input from Woodland's various constituencies, work with the search consultant to develop the detailed job/position description, and review the first round of candidates. They will then organize and conduct interviews with the semifinal and final candidates. At the end of the process, the Search Committee will present one supported candidate to be confirmed by Woodland's Board of Trustees. Another major function of the Search Committee is to keep our community informed and engaged throughout the process, while ensuring the confidentiality of the candidates.

What is the role of Woodland's faculty, staff, administration in the process? 
Faculty, staff and administration will be actively engaged throughout the search by taking the time to meet candidates when they visit the school, welcoming visitors into their classrooms, and providing other means of input as requested by the Search Committee.

What are the roles of Woodland's parents, students, and alumni  in the process?
During the process, there will be opportunities for members of the Woodland community to provide input. Members of our community will be invited to meet our Head of School finalists when they come to campus. Information about the schedule will be posted and emailed when available on our HOS Search webpage.

Will the Head of School search impact my child's experience at Woodland?
Our faculty, staff and administrators are committed to our primary goal, which is to provide your child with an outstanding educational experience and to fulfill our mission: to develop collaborative, creative, and confident learners with the strength of voice to follow their hearts and make a difference.

Updates from the Search Committee

As the Search Committee moves through the process of selecting candidates to meet with the Woodland community, updates will be posted here.


Michelle Gabriel, Co-Chair
Mac Harman, Co-Chair
Sonia Arrison
Karuna Mukherjea
Roel Peeters
Keith Randall
Michelle Marcos Smith

Advisory Members
Amaury Bellemans
Danielle Reed


Resource Group 175