The School Committee is pleased to announce that Rick Juliusson, Co-Director of Monteverde Friends School in Monteverde, Costa Rica, has accepted the invitation to serve as the Head of School, effective July 9, 2018.

The Search Committee and search consultant Marcus Hurlbut from Educators’ Collaborative have been working together since last November to recruit a strong candidate pool. The committee completed several trainings in preparation for this work, including workshops on reducing bias, Quaker process and progressive education. Following confidential preliminary interviews, three highly qualified finalists were invited for a 2-day visit and interview in mid-September. The candidates met with staff, faculty, current and alumni parents and caregivers, students, members of the Quaker community, and members of the School Committee. The Search Committee provided a recommendation to the School Committee on September 26th, and the School Committee was in unity for the decision to hire Rick Juliusson as the next Head of School.

Rick brings more than 25 years of educational and non-profit leadership experience, a commitment to Quaker education, and a deep love and care for children. He has served as the Co-Director of the Monteverde Friends School in Costa Rica since July 2015. Rick played a critical role in providing care and support for teachers, building a community of trust and respect among constituents, developing opportunities for student leadership and voice, improving communications, and significantly expanding and strengthening fundraising efforts. The Monteverde Friends School shares many of the same values, mission focus, and challenges that we have here at FSMN, and we are excited that Rick will be able to draw from previous successes and relevant experience.

Before his arrival at Monteverde Friends School, Rick was the executive director for O.U.R. Ecovillage in Vancouver, a model demonstration community for promoting sustainable living. Rick was the executive director for the African Canadian Continuing Education Society which served 10 schools in rural Kenya and also served as the Africa/Middle-east Coordinator for Habitat for Humanity to lead education programs in 9 African countries. His extensive international experience demonstrates his skill with complex administrative leadership and commitment to clear communication and collaborative decision making.

Rick will join us next summer with his wife, Sarah, and sons, Zekiah (8th grade) and Galen (10th grade). Sarah is known as the “Website Doula” and works as a website designer for birth professionals. They are excited to settle down in Minnesota and to be closer to their extended family in Chicago. They are also looking forward to finding a spiritual home for their family in our vibrant and strong Quaker community in the Twin Cities.

We greatly appreciate the work of the Head of School Search Committee, and are especially grateful to the co-clerks Carolyn Carr and Fred Dulles. Committee members have worked tirelessly and thoughtfully over weekends, evenings, and extended meetings to ensure a successful head search.

On behalf of the School Committee, I am so excited to introduce Rick as our next Head of School. We are looking forward to FSMN’s future. Rick brings tremendous leadership expertise, commitment to collaboration and community building, commitment to Quaker progressive education, and enthusiasm. The work of the School Committee moving forward will be to develop a successful transition plan for Rick into the life of our school, and into greater Minnesota. This will be a community-supported activity; please stay tuned for ways to welcome Rick and his family.

Thanks to all who participated in this head search process. We are so grateful for your care and support for FSMN and continued commitment to its vital mission.