About Us

Head of School Search

Indian Creek School has initiated a national search to find a leader with the optimal strengths and characteristics to lead us into the future.
In April 2018, Head of School Rick Branson announced his decision to leave Indian Creek School in June of 2019, at the conclusion of the 2018-19 academic year. The Board of Trustees accepted Rick's decision with great admiration for him and gratitude for his contributions. Indian Creek has initiated a national search and engaged one of the leading education search firms, Wickenden Associates, to assist. Throughout the search process, the opinions of the ICS Community about Indian Creek's signature strengths, challenges, and leadership needs are valued and important. This webpage will help to keep the community informed with updates about the search process and opportunities to share insight during this exciting time in the School's History.

Click here to read Rick Branson's Letter to the Indian Creek Community.

Click here to read Board Chair Matt Alsted's Letter to the Indian Creek Community.

Meet the Search Committee

The Head of School Search Committee is comprised of an engaged, diverse, and talented group of individuals. Committee members include Indian Creek parents, faculty members, alumni, alumni parents and trustees, as well as local business executives and AIMS school administrators, who have been a part of the School community throughout our 45 year history.
Search Committee Chair Robert Wells is excited by this dynamic group.
"I am extremely grateful that these individuals have agreed to voluntarily serve all of our current and future Indian Creek families in this important effort. These individuals each bring significant experience, knowledge and wisdom to this process, and most importantly they care deeply about Indian Creek and providing the best educational environment possible to all children. I am confident that working with our national search consultant they will be able to search for and find a Head of School who is able to energetically serve the best interests of the entire ICS community."

List of 9 items.

  • Robert Wells, Head Search Committee Chair

    Robert Wells is a Principal at the law firm of Miles & Stockbridge. He is the Chair of the Search Committee, and rejoined the ICS Board of Trustees last year. Robert previously served multiple terms as a Trustee and was the Chair of the Development Committee, Governance Committee, and served as a member of the Head of School Search Committee in 2011. His two daughters are members of the ICS Classes of 2019 and 2020.
  • Ab Bear

    Ab Bear teaches at the Lower School as part of the STEM and Mathematics Faculty. He has taught internationally in Bangledesh, Mali, Indonesia, and Burkina Faso, and is now joined on our Lower School campus by his two children who are members of the ICS Classes of 2024 and 2027.
  • Devon Clouse

    Devon Clouse is the Director of the Naval Academy Primary School (NAPS) in Annapolis, Maryland. She has spent her career working in all areas of Early Childhood Education in Washington DC, California, and Texas before settling in Annapolis in 1992.
  • Rick Grindrod

    Rick Grindrod is a seasoned business executive with extensive operational and finance experience. Rick has been a part of the ICS community since his oldest child started kindergarten in 1996. His three children have graduated from Indian Creek in the Classes of 2009, 2010, and 2013. Rick joined the Indian Creek Board of Trustees in 2002, and served as Chair for seven years, including during the school's first capital campaign and related building of the Upper School. Rick was Board Chair during the first search for a new Head of School in 2011.
  • Chris Mannix

    Chris Mannix is the owner of Mid-Atlantic Control Systems. He currently serves on the ICS Board of Trustees and is the Chairman of its Buildings and Grounds Committee. Chris is an alumnus of the Class of 1991.
  • Tonya Montgomery

    Tonya Montgomery has been a member of the Indian Creek faculty for ten years and currently serves as the Upper School Dean of Student Activities and a member of the Humanities department. Tonya has extensive experience in educational administration. She is the parent of two Indian Creek students, who are members of the Classes of 2027 and 2030.
  • Rick Powell

    Rick Powell is President/CEO of Production Management Group. He currently serves on the ICS Board of Trustees, and chairs the Strategic Planning Committee. Rick's daughter graduated from ICS in 2016.
  • Lisa Smith

    Lisa Smith has been a devoted ICS parent since 1999. Lisa commits her time volunteering at Indian Creek and other non-profit organizations in Annapolis and Washington, DC. Lisa and her husband, Chris, have 4 children, two of whom are members of the ICS Classes of 2023 and 2021.
  • Lynne Sullivan

    Lynne Sullivan is the founder and principal of LIS Consulting. She has over 20 years experience consulting with national and international leaders in the financial, hospitality, oil, and pharmaceutical industries, as well as in the non-profit sector. At ICS, Lynne serves as Vice Chair on the Board of Trustees and Chair of the Upper School PTO Committee. She and her husband Dwight are the parents of Shannon who is a member of the ICS Class of 2019.

Search Committee Student Interns

We also are very excited to announce that with the help of the Upper School Associate Head Matt McCormick, we now have the three (3) students serving as interns for our Search Committee: Kyle Huey '21, Melody Kinzer '21, and Kendyl Underwood '20. These students will serve as communication liaisons to the student body to keep our students active and well-informed about the search process. They will also assist with some substantive research issues related to head of school searches, which will be very useful as we move forward. We took this relatively unusual step of intimately involving students in the search because of our belief that this presented a unique opportunity for them to have a real-life management-related experience. The inclusion of students in this special way also is simply an extension of who we are and what we do at Indian Creek to ensure that students have the broadest educational and developmental opportunities possible.      
"I believe that the very best days of Indian Creek lie in our next steps. I fervently believe in the Board of Trustee's strategic plan to be one school in mind, body, spirit, and geography, and to be a school of innovation that shuns complacency and turns away from the status quo.  Indian Creek will thrive as it has by re-invention, by challenging its own conventions, and by always embracing the future with optimism, confidence, and hope."
- Rick Branson, second Head of Indian Creek School

Head of School Search Survey

The Search Committee invited all parents, faculty, staff, students in grades 9-12, alumni, parents of alumni, Trustees, and former Trustees to take a few moments to complete a Head of School Search Community Survey earlier this spring. The search committee was thrilled to 
receive over 300 responses. According to the Wickenden team, which has conducted hundreds of searches, the initial participation and response of the ICS community was excellent, and in our case even more impressive given the short notice that was provided due to our desire to launch the Search as soon as possible after the announcement of Rick Branson's intention to transition at the end of the 2018-19 academic year.

So far the Search Committee has solicited and received input from virtually every segment of the ICS community, including faculty and staff, current and past parents, administrators, students, alumni, and past administrators who certainly have unique and valuable historical perspectives. Your willingness to participate in this process is greatly appreciated and will remain welcomed and necessary as we proceed.

Your initial input was used to develop an Opportunity Statement describing ICS in detail, including its relative strengths and challenges, in an effort to attract candidates who are interested in this particular type of leadership role. This Opportunity Statement will be provided to prospective candidates as early as today, and will be publicly available on our website soon.

In the responses and initial information gathering sessions, our community clearly indicated a belief that ICS has many strengths, while also recognizing some challenges that we are facing.

Most importantly, we seem to passionately believe that we have the opportunity to boldly and successfully manage those challenges, build on our strengths, and move forward together as an innovative leader in educational excellence. These are exciting times at Indian Creek and we will find a Head of School to continue leading this charge!

Contact the Search Committee

We value your opinions about Indian Creek's signature strengths, challenges, and leadership needs. Your comments will help us to identify the traits and characteristics we need to lead us into the future. Thank you for your support of Indian Creek School during this exciting time. Click here to contact the Head Search Committee.

Head of School Search Timeline

List of 4 items.

  • April 2018

    • Rick Branson announces that he will leave Indian Creek at the end of the 2018-19 school year.
    • The Board of Trustees accepts Rick's decision with great admiration for him and gratitude for his contributions.
    • Indian Creek initiates a national search and engaged one of the leading education search firms, Wickenden Associates, to assist us.
    • Indian Creek forms a Search Committee, comprised of an engaged, diverse, and talented group of individuals who have been a part of the School community throughout our 45 year history, to lead the search for our next school leader.
    • The School holds two Open Parent Forums on Tuesday, April 9, and Wednesday, April 10, with Wickenden Associates to give the community insight into the Head Search process and give parents the opportunity to share priorities about the next Head of School.
    • Wickenden Associates interviews members of the faculty, staff, parents, and students about the strengths of Indian Creek School,  challenges that may face the new Head, and what qualities should be found in the next Head of School.
    • A survey is sent to the Indian Creek community bout Indian Creek's signature strengths, challenges, and leadership needs.
    • Wickenden begins accepting candidate applications.
  • Spring 2018

    • Using the information found through interviews, parent forums, and the survey, Wickenden crafts an Opportunity Statement for candidates to learn more about Indian Creek.
  • Fall 2018

    • The application deadline for the Indian Creek Head of School position is near the opening of school.
    • Wickenden Associates, in collaboration with the Indian Creek Search Committee narrows the field to approximately 15 candidates. The Search Committee further narrows this to around eight finalists, who interview with committee members.
    • Three or four finalists are selected to conduct second visits and interviews. The ICS community has the opportunity to meet the candidates and share feedback.
  • November 2018

    • The new Head of School is selected and announced.