The Board of Trustees is our School’s governing group that serves as the guardian of the MICDS Mission. Comprised of 23 members and leaders from both the MICDS and the St. Louis community, 10 of whom are alumni of the School, its primary work is long-term and strategic, including the development and oversight of the Strategic Plan that ensures the continued success and growth of MICDS.
- Composition/Who is the Board of Trustees?
- Currently, the Board has 23 members who are deeply committed to the School and its Mission.
- The composition reflects/is representative of the MICDS community.
- It strives for gender balance. The 2023-24 Board includes 12 women and 11 men.
- At least one-third of the Trustees are alumni/alumnae with representation divided between alumnae and alumni of the school. The 2023-24 Board includes 10 alumni.
- At least one-half of the Trustees are current parents or grandparents. The 2023-24 Board is comprised of 11 current parents and nine parents of alumni.
- The President of the School’s Parents Association and the President of the School’s Alumni Association serve on the Board.
- There is diversity in every way of the Board in professional experience and expertise, skills, and across race/ethnicity, gender, religion, socioeconomic background, and viewpoint.
- Trustee Selection/Nomination Process
How are new members of the Board of Trustees identified, vetted, nominated, and voted upon?
- The Committee on Trustees assesses Board membership needs, identifies skillsets, and gaps that need to be filled and seeks to identify and recruit varied professional experience and expertise including law, medicine, business, finance, marketing/communication, education, and not for profit.
- The Committee on Trustees solicits nominations from current Board members, Parents Association leadership, Alumni Association leadership, and other community members.
- To develop a pipeline of Board candidates, the Committee on Trustees recommends candidates for service on Board committees.
- When considering candidates, the Committee on Trustees looks not only at the current year Board composition but also projects skills and attributes needed three to five years out to take into account rotation off the Board.
- The Committee on Trustees vets and interviews Trustee candidates, ensuring that candidates are a good fit for the School’s needs and culture and will contribute to the School’s advancement and success.
- The Committee on Trustees proposes nominations to the Board of Trustees for consideration, and the full Board elects new Trustees.
- Trustees serve a three-year term and may serve two terms.
- What qualities and attributes do we look for in prospective Trustees?
A prospective Trustee:
- Demonstrates a commitment to MICDS and its Mission.
- Puts the best interests of the School and Mission above individual, family, or personal interests.
- Brings professional expertise and ideally, previous experience on another board.
- Is an independent thinker who listens to and factors different viewpoints into his/her decision-making.
- Thinks critically and strategically.
- Seeks first to understand an issue.
- Demonstrates the ability to speak up and ask clarifying questions that cause others to think differently about an issue.
- Represents the MICDS community – the past, present, and future.
- Demonstrates discretion with sensitive or proprietary information, and has the ability to keep information confidential.
- Is a good School ambassador.
- Interacts well with a wide, diverse range of School constituents.
- Is solution-driven.
- Participates in the MICDS Fund and is committed to making MICDS a philanthropic priority.
- The Role of the Board - What we do
- The Board hires, supports, partners with, evaluates, and sets compensation for the Head of School.
- The Board’s focus is long-range and strategic.
- Trustees act as ambassadors and fiduciaries of the School.
- The Board is responsible for the financial stability and long-term sustainability of the School.
- Trustees ensure that the School is in compliance with the applicable laws, regulations, and Board policies.
- Trustees are guardians of the School’s Mission.
- Trustees are keepers of the Strategic Plan – The Board works with the Administrative Team and through Board committees to support, promote, and monitor progress toward strategic priorities.
- The Board undertakes formal strategic planning every five to seven years.
- It sets annual goals tied to strategic priorities.
- The Board identifies and uses metrics to evaluate curricular and co-curricular programs and teaching to ensure that programming is superior and aligns with the Mission and Strategic Plan.
- The Board speaks with one voice as a whole Board, not as individual Trustees.
- Trustees attend community and campus events including Admission’s Open House, Commencement, the Faculty Recognition Ceremony, Board of Visitors Reception, and other events.
- The Board functions in a committee structure.
- There are seven Board committees: Development, Collaboration and Inclusion, Committee on Trustees, Executive Committee, Facilities, Finance and Audit, and Investment.
- Trustees generally serve on two committees.
- Committees meet four to five times per year except for the Executive Committee which meets seven times per year, the Finance and Audit Committee which meets eight times per year, and the Development Committee which meets six times per year.
- Occasionally, the Board forms ad hoc committees or task forces to study a particular issue. Most recently, task forces have considered long-term financial planning and tuition remission.
- Committees include non-Trustees, faculty, and administrators.
- Trustees are Board members first; they are careful to separate themselves from their particular roles as parents, grandparents, and alumni.
- Board members guard against conflicts of interest, whether personal or business-related.
- Board members consider the interests of all stakeholders in the community.
- Trustees participate actively in important School events and fundraising efforts.
- The Board conducts an annual new Trustee orientation, ongoing Trustee education and evaluation, and board leadership succession planning.
- The Role of the Board - What we don’t do
- Day-to-day operations and management of the School; this is the Head of School’s job.
- Curriculum development/academic decisions or evaluations
- Student discipline
- Personnel matters
- Faculty recruitment and retention efforts
- Facilities management
- Athletics and arts
- Board Leadership Planning
- The Board Chair and Vice Chairs serve a term of two years.
- The Committee on Trustees considers candidates for Board leadership and proposes a leadership slate to the full Board for discussion and review. The full Board elects Board leadership.
- Board Goals
Strategic Plan. Working with the Administrative team and through Board Committees, support, promote, and implement initiatives envisioned by the School’s Mission statement and 2015-2022 Strategic Plan.
- Keep the Mission and Strategic Plan at the forefront of Board deliberations and decisions.
- Identify and rely upon metrics to evaluate curricular and co-curricular programs and teaching to ensure that they are superior and align with the Mission and Strategic Plan.
- Review progress of Strategic Plan priorities.
- Lay necessary groundwork for creation of the next strategic Plan.
Culture and Wellbeing of Community. Advance and sustain a culture of community centered on kindness, dignity, and respect, where every student, family, faculty, and staff member feels a sense of belonging and connection.
- Support the Head of School in his efforts to make MICDS the “happiest school” in St. Louis.
- Working with the Administrative team and through the Collaboration and Inclusion Committee, support and evaluate efforts to prepare students to thrive in a global and diverse world.
- Support School efforts to address the issue of racism and to strive for its elimination from our community.
Good Governance Practices. Ensure that the Board of Trustees is high-performing and fully current regarding best practices in independent school governance.
- Ensure strong, open communication between Head of School and Board.
- Continue to improve Board function, communication, and effectiveness.
- Manage Board of Trustee imperatives:
- Act as responsible fiduciaries of the School, accepting responsibility for the financial stability and financial future of MICDS.
- Ensure all Trustees serve as ambassadors for the School, particularly in support of the Head of School, Parent-School Partnership, and as advocates of respect, trust, and inclusion across the MICDS community.
- Ensure all Trustees, as School leaders and ambassadors, participate in the MICDS Fund and make MICDS a philanthropic priority.
- Provide opportunities for programmatic review and discussion during meetings.
Financial Sustainability. Ensure that the School has a secure and diverse funding base that supports annual operations, strategic priorities, and physical plant maintenance, repair, and replacement.
- Assess evolving enrollment trends and changing applicant pool dynamics across the St. Louis region and the impact these trends may have on marketing, tuition, financial aid, and other operational and budgetary considerations.
- Assess and prepare to implement new financial aid strategies that create levels of support for more families who would like to choose MICDS.
- Evaluate effectiveness of Ram Relief Fund efforts, managing this commitment against the budget and future demand for financial aid.
- Identify strategies for ensuring adequate funding for PPRRSM reserves.
- Begin development of a long-range plan for targeted investment and funding projects.
COVID-19 Response. Stay abreast of developments at School and in the community regarding COVID-19, and be vigilant and prepared to support the School, as needed, in its response.
- Ensure Board members are regularly informed regarding the health and safety of our School community in the face of COVID-19.
- Support the Administration in managing COVID-19 impact on enrollment and budget and in other areas of the School, as needed.
- 2023-2024 Board of Trustees Roster
Please click on the respective board member’s name to view his or her profile.
- Andy Condie ’82, Chair
- Jason Brauer ’94, Vice Chair
- Mike Andrew, Second Vice Chair and Treasurer
- Charmaine Ansari, Secretary
- Susannah Danforth
- Nikki Doughty
- Joe Gira ’89
- Lindsey Herzog Shipley ’07
- John Lochhead
- Alaina Maciá
- Jill Spitzfaden Meyer ’92
- Kara Mikulec
- McKay Baur Mills ’92
- Rufus Moore, Jr.
- Daphne Morgan
- Chonda Nwamu
- Julie Ralph
- Mike Riney ’04
John Sedgwick ’05
- Annie Sloane
- David Steward II ’95
- David Weiss ’81
- Board Committees
- Executive Committee
- Committee on Trustees
- Collaboration and Inclusion Committee
- Development Committee
- Facilities Committee
- Finance and Audit Committee
- Investment Committee
- MICDS Past Board Chairs2020-2022 Kent Rapp ’76
2018-2020 Michelle Cohen ’882016-2018 William L. Polk Jr. ’742014-2016 Julie Lilly ’86
2012-2014 Terry Pflager ’80
2010-2012 Stuart Campbell
2008-2010 Spencer Burke ’652006-2008 Barry L. Babcock2004-2006 Michael R. Holmes2002-2004 Stephen C. Jones ’662000-2002 Jack E. Thomas ’701997-2000 Robert L. Virgil1995-1997 Harry E. Rich1993-1995 John P. Stupp Jr. ’681991-1993 Victoria Shinkle Charles ’64
- Mary Institute Past Board Chairs1989-1991 Marie Campagna Brauer ’641986-1989 James S. McDonnell III ’541984-1986 Virginia Russell Rowe ’611983-1984 Reuben M. Morriss III ’541981-1983 Donald Danforth Jr. ’501979-1981 Edward J. Schnuck1977-1979 Stephen H. Loeb ’491975-1977 James L. Johnson Jr. ’501973-1975 Charles E. Claggett ’271971-1973 Thomas R. Remington1969-1971 Bourne Bean1965-1969 Laurence E. Mallinckrodt ’261963-1965 George K. Hoblitzelle1961-1963 William H. Charles ’311959-1961 Daniel Upthegrove Jr. ’261957-1959 K. Myron Hickey1955-1957 H. Torrey Foster1953-1955 I. A. Long1951-1953 Edmund Temple Allen1950-1951 Herbert N. Jones1948-1950 Austin P. Leland ’241947-1948 Samuel D. Capen1946-1947 Grayson Carroll1944-1946 J. Wesley McAfee1941-1944 Donald DanforthHeads of Washington University Board of Managers and Mary Institute Board of TrusteesMary Institute was begun in 1859 as a Department of Washington University. The Corporation of Washington University acted as an advisory board to the School. The heads of the board were:1931-1941 Malvern Bryan Clopton1930-1931 Charles Nagel1895-1930 Robert S. Brookings1887-1895 George E. Leighton1859-1887 William Greenleaf EliotIn 1940, the Corporation of Washington University appointed a separate Board of Directors to handle the affairs of Mary Institute.
- Saint Louis Country Day School Past Board Chairs1989-1991 John L. Gillis, Jr. ’571987-1989 Richard T. Grote ’631985-1987 John H. Biggs1983-1985 Lewis B. Shepley ’571981-1983 F. Carl Schumacher Jr. ’611979-1981 Charles C. Allen Jr. ’411977-1979 John Peters MacCarthy ’501975-1977 Donald H. Streett ’521973-1975 William B. McMillan Jr. ’451971-1973 Landon Y. Jones ’341969-1971 Thomas R. Collins Jr. ’381966-1969 William R. Orthwein Jr. ’341964-1966 Ethan A.H. Shepley Jr. ’411962-1964 W.L. Hadley Griffin1961-1962 Eugene F. Williams Jr. ’411960-1961 Kenton R. Cravens1958-1960 Thomas G. Rutledge1955-1958 Chapin S. Newhard1954-1955 James P. Hickok1951-1954 James S. McDonnell Jr.1950-1951 Albert W. Wenthe1948-1950 Donald D. Danforth1945-1948 Ethan A.H. Shepley1918-1945 George T. Moore