On February 14, Head of School Rick Hardy announced the hiring of CA’s first Dean of Academic Program and Equity:
I am very pleased to announce that Robert Munro has accepted our offer to serve as CA’s Dean of Academic Program and Equity, beginning on July 1. In this newly-configured senior administrative position, Rob will oversee the academic program and lead the institution’s diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice efforts. This work includes the development of personal responsibility in cultural competency institution-wide, and an awareness of thoughtful stewardship of our world and its critical resources. This role is focused on the nexus of academics and equity, understanding that a school cannot be academically excellent without equity.
Rob comes to CA from Middlesex School, where he has taught in the History Department since 2012, and directed the school’s Global Studies program since 2016. He also coaches boys’ squash and tennis, and serves as a dormitory assistant. Rob will continue to live on the Middlesex campus with his wife and two daughters. He earned a B.A. from Bates College and a Ph.D. from Michigan State University. Rob serves as co-president of The Robbins House, a member of the Board of Governors at the Concord Museum, and an appointed member and clerk for the Concord Center Cultural District Committee.
In his conversations with the search committee and throughout his campus visit, Rob impressed people with his friendly, outgoing personality; his ability to listen and connect with students as well as adults; and his thoughtful, measured approach. Members of the community appreciated his willingness to talk candidly about difficult issues; his ability to think strategically; and his ability to “synthesize and reflect his thoughtful impressions of CA and meaningfully connect with both specific individuals and the group.” Rob drew praise for his “facility with cross-departmental collaboration” as well as “his understanding of how representing a school externally ties into developing a more diverse faculty.” Members of the community noted his “sense for teenagers — how they think, how they learn, how they grow” and expressed excitement that he will “bring a fresh perspective to campus, that includes creative thinking about how to build a new program, as well as a broad range of experiences thinking about equity and inclusion.” The CA community also praised Rob’s experience with a wide range of teaching modes, and his enthusiasm for extending love of learning beyond classroom walls through experiential opportunities and partnerships with local, national, and global institutions.
I want to take this opportunity to thank Amy Fredericks and Marie Myers, who co-chaired this search, along with the members of the search committee — Justin Bull, Maggy Godfroy, Kirsten Hoyte, Andrew Stevens, Will Tucker, and Sarah Yeh — for the many hours they devoted to reviewing candidate materials, guiding the interview process, and welcoming candidates to campus. I also want to thank our search consultants from Strategenius, Orpheus Crutchfield and Mary Rose Fernandez, who worked tirelessly to ensure this very successful outcome. I am deeply grateful to all for their professionalism, their dedication, and their wisdom.
We look forward to welcoming Rob to the community. Please join me in congratulating and thanking Rob Munro, CA’s Dean of Academic Program and Equity.
Head of School
Dresden Endowed Chair
CA Celebrates Black History Month with Assembly Focused on Civil and Human Rights, Past, Present, and Future
On February 24, Concord Academy welcomed representatives from the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights to speak with students about their work advocating and organizing for democracy, justice, inclusion, and opportunity for all people in the United States. The event took place thanks to the coordinated efforts of 9th grade class student leaders, who modeled coalition building in initiating this all-school assembly, coordinating with affinity groups and the Community and Equity Office to create and host this opportunity for school-wide learning and reflection. Affinity groups have also been engaging the CA community in Black History Month initiatives throughout the month.
CA’s 2021 Hall Fellow, entrepreneur, author, and public speaker Mallika Chopra ’89, spoke about her personal journey and her experience teaching meditation and speaking about living with intention, balance, and purpose. As part of the Centennial Hall Fellow series, she shared a brief meditative practice — a simple yet powerful tool for charting a course according to our deepest desires and values.
Each year, Concord Academy celebrates Martin Luther King Jr. Day with a day of engagement rather than a day off. This year, CA honored Dr. King’s legacy in new ways. The program, held on January 27, featured not one guest but seven, and the format was, for the first time, virtual. The day’s theme, “Infinite Hope Imagining Black Futures,” took inspiration from a line from a 1968 address of Dr. King’s: “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.” A panel discussion, several workshops — including one by CA alumna Daysha Veronica ’10 — and a Q&A and keynote reading by celebrated poet Danez Smith asked the CA community to focus through a specific lens: imagining what a liberated future that uplifts and centers Black people, communities, and culture looks like.