January 2019

Dear Members of the Oak Hill School Community,

I am thrilled and humbled to be joining the Oak Hill School community, and I pledge to continue to build on the very fine work that the Board of Trustees, administration, faculty, and staff have done since the school’s inception to make it such a strong and highly regarded institution.  I also recognize the invaluable support and contributions of the Oak Hill parents, and I look forward to working with you and your children in the coming years, staying true to the school’s mission. Additionally, I am very grateful to the members of the Search Committee and the Board, both for offering me this incredible opportunity and for their ongoing efforts to ensure a smooth and seamless transition for both me and the community.  

Oak Hill’s commitment to providing a rigorous, first-rate, and truly well-rounded education in a nurturing family setting is quite impressive.  The days I spent on campus in October were highly enjoyable and enriching.  I found the students to be bright, happy, and engaging, and I was equally impressed with the intellect, passion, and dedication of the faculty and staff.  I also met and spoke with parents whose devotion to the school was readily evident, and who are clearly involved as partners in the learning process.   The feelings of warmth, inclusivity, and community on the campus were palpable.

As I learned more about Oak Hill during my visit I discovered a strong sense of connection between the school’s mission and my own thoughts about what an independent school should represent and what it must strive to produce in its students: namely to inspire intellectual curiosity and critical thought, promote aesthetic sensitivity, physical well-being, respect for others, moral fortitude, and an inclusive and global mindset. In addition, I also learned about the extraordinary breadth and depth of electives, unique programs, and other opportunities offered to students.

It was also exciting to discover that the Oak Hill community is not content to rest on its laurels but is instead looking to the future with both a sense of pride in the school’s many accomplishments as well as an understanding of the priorities and challenges to be addressed.   Oak Hill is a wonderfully vibrant school poised to take the next steps in its development, and I am delighted to have the opportunity to work with you all in leading this effort.   I look forward to meeting and getting to know all of you in the coming months.     


John O’Brien