Craig W. Bradley, Head of School
Craig Bradley began his tenure at Hotchkiss in July of 2016, continuing a career characterized by his commitment to creating inclusive residential-learning communities of academic distinction.
Craig was raised in Winchester, Massachusetts, by parents who dedicated their careers to public education; his father was a biology teacher and his mother a school secretary. After graduating from Winchester High School, Craig received his bachelor’s degree in English at Dartmouth College. Among the many college activities he counts as experiences that would later influence his professional career are serving as a residential advisor, chairing the Board of the Campus Center, overseas study in both France and England, and serving as an intern to the dean of freshmen.
Craig received the St. Andrew’s Society of New York Scholarship and attended the University of Edinburgh, where he received his master’s degree in English in 1983. He returned to Dartmouth as an assistant dean and class dean. Members of the senior class elected him their Baccalaureate speaker in 1990. During his years working at Dartmouth, he learned to make furniture and joyfully led many kayaking trips with the Ledyard Canoe Club. He met his future wife, Elizabeth Webb, a Dartmouth alumna and fellow kayaker.
In 1990, Craig was appointed the dean of students at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, where he led the Student Affairs division and guided the development of a more inclusive residential-life program. Married just as they were moving to Kenyon, Elizabeth and Craig enjoyed hosting student gatherings, leading outdoor trips, and welcoming their first child, Anna.
A call to serve as the dean of student affairs at Bowdoin College led them back to New England and Brunswick, Maine. The focus of his work there was to build community at a time when the college was struggling to meet the needs of a changing student body. Craig was firmly committed to building a residential learning community that was inclusive and that celebrated the many different cultures, backgrounds, and perspectives reflected on campus. The effectiveness of this work was evident in student-satisfaction surveys that rose from 28 percent in 1996 to 88 percent in 2006.
What began as a voluntary engagement at Bowdoin became the focus of his professional life for the next decade: working with the Aga Khan Development Network to plan and build a network of boarding schools in diverse areas of the developing world. In 2006, Craig and his family moved to Paris, France, where he led the program design and implementation that led to Aga Khan Academies in Kenya, India, and Mozambique, as well as future schools planned throughout sub-Saharan Africa, Central Asia, and South Asia.
Craig traveled frequently to sub-Saharan Africa and India and worked closely with colleagues from a wide range of diverse cultural, linguistic, tribal, and faith backgrounds, an experience that has profoundly influenced his pluralistic sensibility. He found the process of planning and building new schools in environments where scarcity is a defining condition and quality is an elusive standard to be challenging and deeply rewarding.
Craig and Elizabeth are longtime admirers of the Hotchkiss School and delighted to be part of its community.