Second year of new WRA winter festival unites community.
Head of School
A leader in joyful learning
Head of School Suzanne Walker Buck has a long history with boarding schools. She is a graduate of both the Fay School and Miss Porter's School. She says she knew as early as the fifth grade that the world of boarding schools held a spell of magic and could always foresee returning to work in such an extraordinary environment.
After graduating from Connecticut College, Mrs. Buck joined Westminster School as an Admission Counselor, Dorm Parent, and Coach of Field Hockey and Lacrosse. From Westminster she attended graduate school earning a degree in clinical social work from Columbia University and a degree in education from Harvard University. She has since held posts at Fay School, New Hampton School, and most recently as the Rector (Head of School) at Chatham Hall in Chatham, Virginia, where in four years she increased enrollment by 36 percent; added significant tuition revenue; increased annual giving by 14 percent and developed a bold strategic plan.
Additionally, Mrs. Buck is the Co-Chair of the Board of The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS) and she also serves on the Board of the Enrollment Management Association (EMA). She is married to Johnny Buck, art teacher, coach and advisor. They have a daughter, Halsey '24, and two children from Johnny's first marriage, Oliver and Nina.
Does Your Head of School Do Carpool Karaoke? Because Ours Does!
Click below to watch a special episode of The WRAp, guest starring Mrs. Buck!
A Few Special Highlights
Mrs. Buck is always seeking ways to help Reserve deliver on its mission to provide an unrivaled educational experience, one that is illuminated by tradition, sparked by innovation and energized by joy. In the section below, we highlight a few special moments and pieces that demonstrate this, from a recent winter festival complete with fireworks and ice sculptures, to a special Achievements piece spotlighting our community members' accomplishments and her first year of thoughtful and bold leadership.
Industry Insights From Mrs. Buck
As a thought leader in the boarding and independent school world, Mrs. Buck often shares her perspective, insights and takeaways on new and existing experiences and challenges in education. Take a look at some of her recent interviews and special presentations.
- On Feb. 22, 2022, Mrs. Buck, Chief Financial and Operating Officer Tom Arnold and Director of Communications & Marketing Meg Colafella co-presented at the National Business Officers Association (NBOA) conference. Their presentation, "A Creative Approach to Strategic Planning" outlined their new approach to strategic planning which elevated the school's attention to financial sustainability and leveraged the opinions of diverse constituencies.
- In the Fall of 2021, Mrs. Buck was featured in the NAIS Member Voices podcast in the series "Transitioning to Headship." The Q&A excerpt from the podcast is available to read here.
- In July 2021, Mrs. Buck was a featured guest on an episode of the National Association of Independent School (NAIS) podcast Member Voices. In this engaging and thoughtful interview, Mrs. Buck shares leadership insights, her personal approach and the WRA story with a national audience.
- On Feb. 22, Mrs. Buck and Chief Financial and Operating Officer Tom Arnold presented on "Leading with Purpose Through a Pandemic" at the annual National Business Officers Association conference. Mr. Arnold serves on the NBOA board.
- On Dec. 10, Mrs. Buck virtually attended the annual conference for TABS.org - The Association of Boarding Schools, presenting on "The New Talent Profile: Hiring for Boarding Schools in a Post-2020 World." Mrs. Buck serves as Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees for TABS.
- Listen to Mrs. Buck in the podcast link below as she shares her insights on COVID-19 with Peter Baron and Hans Mundahl on the Enrollment Management Association podcast The Enrollment Spectrum.
Kudos to Kelly Janssen '23 for designing these sweet shoes!
On Saturday, January 30, WRA got fired up so the community could chill!