News Post

Karl J. Sjolund Named Next Head of School
Karl J. Sjolund Named Next Head of School
Sherri Bergman

On Saturday, October 10, the SAS Board of Trustees unanimously appointed Karl J. Sjolund to be the next permanent Head of St. Andrew's-Sewanee School. His tenure will begin on July 1, 2016.

Eunice Colmore, chair of the Head of Search committee noted, "Among a slate of highly qualified candidates, Karl stood out as particularly well-suited to lead SAS at this point in its history."

Sjolund, a boarding school graduate himself, has devoted his career to living and working in boarding schools. He is currently in his ninth successful year as head of Salem Academy, a boarding and day school, like SAS, with both an essential church affiliation and a reciprocal relationship with its neighboring college. He is a man of great faith, confirmed in the Episcopal Church, and committed to the Episcopal educational model that values diversity in culture and thought.

During a 20-year career at his alma mater, Virginia Episcopal School, Sjolund served in a wide range of administrative positions, taught, and coached. An active leader in the field of education, he is currently treasurer of the board of North Carolina Association of Independent Schools and an advisory board member of World View at UNC Chapel Hill.

Sjolund's proven record of increasing enrollment, directing fund raising, improving student retention, leading strategic initiatives in campus improvement, and balancing budgets will serve SAS well as it addresses the challenges and opportunities ahead. Throughout the search process, we were impressed not just by his résumé and strong references, but also by his faith, honesty, and thoughtfulness.

Sjolund earned an M.A. in Private School Leadership through Columbia University's prestigious Klingenstein Fellows program. He received his B.A. in Economics at Virginia Military Institute, which he attended on a Division-I baseball scholarship.

During his campus visit, Sjolund told the SAS community, "I am deeply committed to the unique educational environment that boarding schools provide and to the value that a strong boarding program offers day students and their families. At St. Andrew's-Sewanee, I see students who are being challenged in every aspect of their lives and who are answering those challenges because they thirst for knowledge of the Good, the True, and the Beautiful. This is an extraordinary school that turns out confident young men and women who are turned on to learning."

Karl and his wife Susan will reside on the SAS campus. Their twin daughters, Berkley and Hannah, are freshmen in college.

Richard Westling, chair of the Board of Trustees, thanked Interim Head of School Judy Chamberlain for the leadership she will continue to provide during the remainder of this academic year, and added, "We are deeply grateful to the SAS community, Search Committee, and Board of Trustees for their involvement and patience throughout the search process. Together, we move forward with confidence that the SAS mission will find growing expression under Karl's leadership."