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New Faculty Welcomed to the Island

Pictured are: (back) Drin Pacuku '15, Ned Heckman, Stephanie Bissett, Danielle Fergus, Ge Song, Netta Hadari, Jeffrey Moore, and Abe Schulte; (middle) Beth Helfrich, Hannah Insuik, Jake Smith, Emily Garvin, Matthew Johnson, Kevin Guevara, and Steven Stewart; (front) Nicole Bowen, Michaela Chipman, Kimberly Randall, Courtney Doyle, Stacy-Ann Rowe '97, and Fiona Mills.

Loomis Chaffee welcomed 22 new faculty and administrators to the school community last week for orientation. As a cohort, they bring a wealth of expertise and diverse experiences to Loomis.

They will join returning faculty, staff, and administrators for opening meetings later this week before classes begin on September 5.

Stephanie Bissett is the new assistant athletic director and will serve as the head girls lacrosse coach and a basketball coach. Stephanie earned a bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University and a master’s degree in sports leadership from Northeastern University. Stephanie garnered numerous accolades as a student athlete and as head coach for lacrosse and basketball at Wheeler School in Rhode Island, where she was named Rhode Island Coach of the Year. She also served as a class dean and physical education teacher at Wheeler. Prior to working in education, Stephanie was a programing coordinator at ESPN.

Nicole Bowen will teach Multivariable Calculus and College-Level Calculus BC, and she will help with the Quantitative Resource Center and math team. Nicole earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in mathematics and biology at University of Connecticut, where she also served as a teaching assistant and adjunct professor of mathematics. Nicole lives in Manchester.

Michaela Chipman will teach English, coach field hockey, and serve as an assistant advisor for the debate team. She recently finished her second season as a faculty intern in Loomis Chaffee’s Summer Program. Michaela earned a bachelor’s degree in political science at Boston College and is working toward a master's degree as a fellow in the Boarding School Teaching Residency at University of Pennsylvania's Graduate School of Education, often referred to as the “Penn Fellow” program. She will live on campus and serve as an affiliate in Longman Hall.

Courtney Doyle will teach math and coach boys water polo. She earned a bachelor’s degree at Bates College and a master's degree in the Penn Fellow program. She taught math at the Lawrenceville School and at Buckingham Browne & Nichols School. Courtney will reside in Cutler Hall.

Danielle Fergus will teach psychology in the Department of Social Sciences, coach swimming and diving, and live on campus and serve as an affiliate in Cutler Hall. A Penn Fellow working toward her master's degree, she earned a bachelor’s degree from Connecticut College, where she was also an accomplished swimmer, served as a local hospital volunteer, and tutored in a correctional facility.

Emily Garvin joins the Science Department after four years teaching at the Hill School in Pennsylvania, where she was a leader for school organizations advocating for equity, inclusion, and social justice. She earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry at Wesleyan University, where she served as a research assistant and captained the crew team. Emily will teach advanced chemistry, coach ice hockey and club crew, and reside in Kravis Hall.

Kevin Guevara will teach world history; coach soccer, wrestling, and lacrosse; and served as an in-dorm faculty member in Flagg Hall. Kevin is a Penn Fellow working toward his master’s degree. He earned a bachelor’s degree in religious studies and philosophy from Pillar College and taught history at The Pingry School in New Jersey and religious studies at Monte Vista Christian School in California. A native of El Salvador, Kevin emigrated to the United States when he was 10 years old.

Netta Hadari is the new Loomis Chaffee Orchestra director. He also will serve as head chamber music coach and director of strings, teach all levels of music theory, and pilot an after-school chamber music program in the winter term. Netta brings a wealth of experience in orchestral conducting, music education, composing, chamber music coaching, and violin performance. He has taught music at Mount Holyoke College, Choate Rosemary Hall, and Fairfield University. His music leadership experience includes the Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra and the Greater New Haven Youth Orchestra, and he works with the New Britain Symphony Orchestra and the Hartford Symphony Orchestra. Netta and his family live in New Haven.

Ned Heckman will teach biology and ecology, coach ultimate frisbee, and serve as an advisor to Spectrum and a dorm affiliate in Longman Hall. Ned earned degrees from Carleton College and Washington University in St. Louis, and he was a student in the Klingenstein Summer Institute of Teachers College of Columbia University. He served as a class dean and teacher at St. Paul Academy in Minnesota.

Beth Helfrich, who has been a dorm head of Carter Hall for three years, will join the English Department teaching faculty this fall. Prior to Loomis, Beth served as an English teacher, upper school head, and director of admissions and marketing at the Woodlawn School in North Carolina. She founded Woodlawn’s Red Barn Players and directed several school theatrical productions. Beth earned a bachelor’s degree from Davidson College and enjoyed a brief stint as a touring actor before joining the independent school world.  

Hannah Insuik will teach biology, coach, and serve as an in-dorm faculty member in Palmer Hall. She comes to Loomis after completing a residency as a Penn Fellow at Deerfield Academy, where she taught chemistry and biology and served as a dorm parent. Hannah earned a bachelor’s degree from Colby College, where she played volleyball, ice hockey, and softball.

Matt Johnson will teach English and computer science and serve as the inaugural associate director of digital and computational learning. In the latter role Matt will work closely with Scott MacClintic ’82, director of the Pearse Hub for Innovation. Matt’s experience includes teaching with AmeriCorps at an inner-city public school, serving as a Penn Fellow at Lawrenceville School, and teaching English and computer science at the Excel Academy Charter School in Boston. He will reside in Cutler Hall. 

Jessica Matzkin joined the faculty this summer as a dean of students and will be the dean to the junior class this year. Jessica was the director of counseling at Thayer Academy in Massachusetts and previously was the director of counseling and then a dean of students at Blair Academy in New Jersey. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Colby College, a master’s degree in American cultural studies from the University of Wyoming, and a master’s degree in social work from Boston College. Jessica has taught Spanish, coached lacrosse and soccer, and served as an outdoor adventure educator. In addition to her duties as a student dean, Jessica will teach psychology and coach JV girls lacrosse. Jessica and her family reside on campus.

Fiona Mills returns to Loomis Chaffee to teach English and social sciences after a five-year hiatus teaching at Proctor Academy in New Hampshire. She previously taught at Loomis from 2008-2011. Fiona has many years of teaching experience across several disciplines. She earned a bachelor’s degree from University of California in San Diego, a master’s degree in English literature from Trinity College, and a doctorate in American literature from University of North Carolina. In addition to her teaching duties, she will assist with initiatives regarding inclusion, equity, and social justice in the school community. Fiona and her family live in Simsbury.   

Jeff Moore will join the College Guidance Office as a college counselor and will serve as head football coach and dorm head of Kravis Hall. He has worked extensively with student athletes and has coached football at the college level and in the Class A New England Prep School league. Mostly recently, he was head football coach at St. Thomas More School in Oakdale, Conn. His collegiate coaching experience includes assistant coaching roles at Amherst College and Yale University. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Massachusetts.

Drin Pacuku ’15 returns to Loomis Chaffee as an alumni admissions fellow. He completed his bachelor’s degree in economics and German studies this spring at St. Lawrence University, where he played on the men’s soccer team. Drin worked at the Center for International and Intercultural Studies at St. Lawrence and interned with Morgan Stanley’s Institutional Equities group. In addition to his responsibilities in admissions, he will be affiliated with Carter Hall and assistant coaching JV soccer and III lacrosse.

Kimberly Randall will teach English, coach field hockey, assist with the ski team, and serve as an affiliate in Cutler Hall. She previously taught English at Hamden Hall School in Hamden, Conn., and religion at St. Martin de Porres Academy in New Haven. Kimberly earned a bachelor’s degree in English from College of the Holy Cross and a master’s degree from University of Sussex in England. She will live on campus.

Stacy-Ann Rowe ’97 returns to the Island to share her passion for art, design, and teaching. She will teach graphic design as well as the new Seminar in the Best Self for sophomores. She also will work part time as a graphic designer in the Office of Strategic Communications & Marketing. Stacy-Ann — who goes by “Ro” — earned an associate’s degree in graphic design and technology from Broward College, and both a bachelor’s degree in graphic design and a master’s degree in fine arts and media design from Full Sail University. Most recently, Ro worked as a contract graphic designer and as a training and instructional design specialist at Percepta, a global marketing services company. Ro lives in Manchester.

Abe Schulte comes to Loomis from California, where he recently completed a master’s degree in mathematics at University of California Santa Barbara. He will teach Linear Algebra and calculus, coach boys cross country in the fall, help with ultimate frisbee in the spring, and serve on the residence faculty of Harman Hall. Abe earned a bachelor’s degree at Northwestern University, where served as a teaching associate for two undergraduate calculus courses and led an excursion club that organized adventure activities.

Jake Smith joins the Office of Admission as an associate director of admission. As a faculty member of the Loomis Chaffee Summer Program for the last eight summers, Jake has taught English and the  Common Good Seminar and has served as dean of students and a dorm head. He comes to Loomis from Marianapolis Prep in Thompson, Conn., where he was as a member of the Theology Department, a dorm head, varsity golf coach, and director of Campus Ministry. In addition to his admissions responsibilities, Jake will coach golf teach the new Seminar in the Best Self for sophomores, and serve as a dorm affiliate in Kravis Hall.

Ge Song joins the Classical and Modern Languages faculty as a sabbatical replacement for Chinese teacher Bo Zhao. Ge arrives at Loomis from Shanghai, China, where she has taught at Dulwich College for the past two years. Prior to Dulwich, Ge taught Mandarin Chinese at Hotchkiss. In addition to teaching, Ge will help coach club basketball, assist in the Office of Admission, and serve as an affiliate in Richmond Hall. She will live on campus.

Steve Stewart brings more than 10 years of teaching experience to Loomis, where he will teach astronomy and physics. He has a doctorate in science education and has taught at the college and high school levels, including most recently at Moses Brown School in Rhode Island.

Pictured are: (back) Drin Pacuku, Ned Heckman, Stephanie Bissett, Danielle Fergus, Ge Song, Netta Hadari, Jeffrey Moore, and Abe Schulte; (middle) Beth Helfrich, Hannah Insuik, Jake Smith, Emily Garvin, Matthew Johnson, Kevin Guevara, and Steven Stewart; (front) Nicole Bowen, Michaela Chipman, Kimberly Randall, Courtney Doyle, Stacy-Ann Rowe, and Fiona Mills.