When Head of School Phil Peck announced that he would retire in June 2022, Holderness School began a nationwide search to find his replacement. While that search is still ongoing, the board of trustees has announced that Mr. Peck will spend the first year of his retirement on campus in a newly-created advisory role: Head of Cool.
As Holderness School’s first-ever Head of Cool, Mr. Peck will be a chill but totally rad fixture on campus. He will work out of his new ‘office’ by the foosball tables in Lower Weld, and commute to campus on his 1949 Triumph Trophy TR5 Scrambler Custom motorcycle – the same vehicle driven by Arthur “Fonzie” Fonzarelli in the hit ABC sitcom “Happy Days.” His Golden Retriever, Bella, will ride alongside him in a canine-safe sidecar.
“Oh jeepers, I’m quite ‘stoked’ to be stepping into this new role,” Mr. Peck said. “I’m ready to loosen the bow tie, show off my leather jacket, and take the school in a cooler direction. I think it’s going to be pretty neat.”
In his new role, Mr. Peck will be responsible for looking awesome, hanging out, and imparting valuable life lessons to the new head of school - whoever that may be. He also has plans to form a campus motorcycle club, Children of Empathy, where the only rule is The Golden Rule. Helmets will be required.
“Whether he’s riding his motorcycle, protecting the school’s turf against Proctor, or fostering growth mindsets, Phil is as cool as an OB solo in early March,” said Board Chair Nell Reynolds. “We couldn’t just let him ride off into the sunset - although I admit that would have looked super, super cool.”
It’s a hot August morning on the Holderness campus, and Elizabeth McClellan has a lot on her mind.
The summer sky, hazy from wildfires burning thousands of miles away in California and other western states, hints at a future dimmed by the widespread effects of climate change. Just a week ago, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a report warning of “irreversible” warming in the coming decades, regardless of any future reduction in carbon emissions.
While we can’t wait to welcome students back to campus this fall, we’re just as excited to welcome a new class of faculty to the Holderness community. This year, we’ll meet a new dean of students, several classroom teachers, a new assistant athletic director, strength and conditioning coach, and an interim chaplain. Let’s take a minute to get to know our newest Holderness educators.
Is Holderness right for you? The best way to find the right boarding school is to reach out. Check us out in person in New Hampshire or virtually. See why Holderness is more than a school, it's an elevated experience.