William S. McKersie, Ph.D., Superintendent of Schools
Who I Am
Intellectual Rigor and Compassion are my core educational values. The best educators and schools produce strong intellectual outcomes, while also creating compassionate leaders.
My essential role as a leader is fostering a community of students, faculty and families to embrace Intellectual Rigor and Compassion. The embrace must be coherent and cohesive, such that children and adolescents evolve into adults, who, with wisdom, care and openness, have the capacity and commitment to be world citizens and problem solvers in ethical and inclusive ways.
Connections are a related educational value for me. Human connections are vital to student success. Intellectual Rigor and Compassion are empty concepts without an educational setting rich with healthy relationships among administrators, faculty, students and families. Every student needs to be valued for their individual gifts, opportunities and challenges.
Ultimately, my purpose as an educational leader is simple: to help students and faculty discover joy and excitement. I repeatedly remind my colleagues, “Please discover the joy in your heart, embrace that joy, share that joy, and our joy will flourish.”
Where I Have Been
My values emerge from working solely for high-performing educational organizations—spanning public, independent and parochial schools, higher education institutions and educational foundations. I started my career at Northfield Mount Hermon School (MA) as an administrator and coach (1981-85). I worked for the Joyce Foundation (Chicago) and Cleveland Foundations as a Senior Program Officer (1986-1990; 1997-2002). I then was Director of the High School Transformation Initiative for the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Schools (2002-04). I served as Associate Dean for the Harvard Graduate School of Education (2004-08). I returned to K-12 education as Associate Superintendent for Academic Excellence for the Archdiocese of Boston (2008-12). I subsequently served as Superintendent of the Greenwich Public Schools (2012-16) and the Weston Public Schools (2016-2021).
I received my undergraduate degree from Tufts University, an Ed.M. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and my Ph.D. from The University of Chicago. I also have state and national (USSF) coaching licenses in soccer.
The Personal Matters
As the product of an academic family, I am a native of Chicago (Hyde Park neighborhood), and spent my adolescent years in Ithaca, NY. I reside in Greenwich (CT) with my spouse, Katherine McKersie, and our two daughters, Riona and Arabella, who attend the Greenwich Public Schools. I have two older sons: Liam is the Assistant Men’s Varsity Soccer Coach for Emerson College, and Max is entering his senior year at Bates College.
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