The Opportunity

The Hotchkiss School is an independent boarding school located in Lakeville, Connecticut. Founded in 1891, the school provides an education of academic distinction to 600 students in grades 9 through 12, and to a small number of postgraduates. The Hotchkiss sits on 827 acres of woods, fields, and farmland in the midst of the scenic Berkshire-Taconic region — a place the Nature Conservancy calls “one of the most extraordinary landscapes in the Northeast.” The school’s state-of-the-art facilities, combined with these surroundings, make Hotchkiss an extraordinary place to live and learn.

The Position

Role of the Director of Campus Safety and Security for The Hotchkiss School

Reporting to the chief financial officer, the director of campus safety and security provides leadership, vision, and administrative oversight for the operations of the department of Campus Safety and Security.

This department serves to protect students, employees, campus residents, and visitors by providing a safe and secure environment. The director creates policies and procedures, maintains the school’s emergency plan providing yearly training on topics of emergency preparedness to the Emergency Policy Group, and assists other campus departments with their emergency preparedness needs. Further, the director supervises the locksmith and transportation coordinator while leading a team of campus safety and security officers that patrol 24-hours/365 days a year. The director works to develop staff, to improve physical security processes and controls, and to enhance the school’s diverse, inclusive, and welcoming environment. This position works in collaboration with school leaders and state and local law enforcement partners to ensure policy application aligns with the Hotchkiss mission and values as well as maintains and fosters positive working relationships with the local police, fire marshal, fire departments, and other community organizations.

History of the Position

Following the events at Sandy Hook Elementary in December of 2013, the leadership at the Hotchkiss School determined that a complete assessment of their current safety and security procedures was necessary. The firm of Margolis Healy & Associates (MHA) was selected to provide this extensive evaluation. Over the course of several months, MHA reviewed the school’s physical space, staffing, policies, and procedures against national best practices in education safety and security and formulated recommendations to assist the school in its efforts to enhance their safety program.

One of the recommendations regarding security operations was to create a director of campus safety and security position. More specifically, it was suggested to hire a senior level director to help provide strategic vision, leadership, and professional development training to the staff of the department. To this end, the school conducted a national search and hired their current director in December of 2014.

The current director will be retiring the end of this academic year. He has spent the last almost six years working to enhance and professionalize the safety and security department. His efforts have resulted in a well-respected safety and security team that is seen as a true campus partner and integral to the continued success of the institution and the safety of all students, faculty, staff, and visitors. He leaves the school having constructed a strong foundation for the department from which a new director can build upon and grow, helping the department reach new heights and continued success.

Opportunities and Challenges of the Role

Opportunities, challenges and priorities for the new director:

  • The director will need to learn the culture of the school and the department, truly understand the needs and concerns of the safety and security staff, and effectively work on plans to maintain high job satisfaction, professional development, and morale.
  • The director will work with the school’s senior leadership to maintain all emergency response and preparedness plans and protocols as well as provide training and table-top exercises to all campus constituents.
  • The director will need find ways to effectively meet with and engage the entire student body.
  • The remote location of the school provides interesting challenges in terms of staff recruitment as well as a prolonged response time for fire and law enforcement agencies.
  • It is expected that the new director will bring new ideas, initiatives, and programs to successfully strengthen and enhance the department.
  • The director will maintain thorough training practices and improve all aspects of departmental training utilizing current techniques to ensure staff are well versed in best practices and protocols.
  • With 600 students and 350 faculty/staff, Hotchkiss is a complex organization that operates on over 800 acres including a large lake and athletic facility that offer their own risk and safety challenges.
  • The director will maintain the department’s strong commitment to the high level of customer service the campus has grown accustomed to over the years.
  • The department has a solid staff, committed to their work and to the safety and security of the campus and the director will have the opportunity to continue to grow and develop the staff and the department.
  • The new director will evaluate, revise, and maintain comprehensive operating procedures and policies reflecting current national best practices for education security.
  • The director must embrace working with an intelligent, highly engaged student body at a pivotal time in their educational career.

Measures of Success

At an appropriate interval after joining The Hotchkiss School, the following items will define initial success for the director:

  • The director has gained the trust of the community by being visible and engaged in all aspects of campus life.
  • The director has a deep understanding of the Hotchkiss culture and has learned to effectively work within the school’s culture.
  • The department continues to operate with a high level of professionalism and competence and continues to be well respected by the various school constituents.
  • The director is viewed as a strong partner who is accessible and provides honest and open communication.
  • The director has continued to move the department forward with new programs and initiatives.
  • The director, along with key leadership, will continue to review, revise, and implement emergency management plans and procedures to best meet the needs of the school.
  • The director has reviewed the department’s organizational strengths and weaknesses, policies, and procedures, and has developed strategic plans for managing short-term change and long-term development for the department.
  • A plan is in place to train key faculty members on necessary safety and emergency/crisis response issues.
  • Mutually supportive and collaborative relationships have been developed with students, faculty, staff, and parents.
  • The director has worked to know the staff and their capacity, understands the work of all the department’s positions, and provides transparent, ethical leadership for the department.
  • The department feels supported by the director and believes the director genuinely has their best interests in mind as decisions are made.
  • The director will have successfully completed a year of campus events with very few issues.
  • The department consistently identifies and implements technology and best practices to enhance safety in the campus community.
  • The school community continues to value the department and their work.
  • The director has formed meaningful working relationships with local law enforcement agencies and with community partners.

Qualifications and Characteristics

The successful candidate is required to have a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, business administration, or other closely related field, with a minimum of five years of experience in security/law enforcement in a management capacity including staff supervision and training. Professional certifications such as the Certified Protection Professional (CPP), Physical Security Professional (CPP), or Certified Emergency Manager (CEM) are highly desired. A master’s degree in a related field and/or leadership experience working in safety/security within an educational setting are strongly preferred.

The successful candidate will have uncompromising integrity and honesty; exemplary leadership skills; strong interpersonal, oral and written communications skills; and a proven record of creating robust, cohesive teams. Further minimum qualifications include: the ability to work collegially; demonstrated knowledge of current issues in public safety and private security functions including emergency preparedness; capacity to maintain composure during challenging and crisis situations; and strong computer skills. Finally, the next director will have a demonstrated commitment to the safety and well-being of others; possess a solid knowledge of public safety communication systems, policies and practices; be knowledgeable about, or willing to learn, the statutes of the state of Connecticut, particularly as they relate to an educational community; and will partner with state and other law enforcement agencies, fire department, and EMS to promote the safety and security of the campus and local community.

In addition to the above-stated qualifications and characteristics, The Hotchkiss School stakeholders identified the following characteristics as important for the director (in no particular order):

  • a passion for serving in an educational environment with an ability to build strong rapport with students, parents, faculty, and staff;
  • appreciation for the school’s mission, values and culture;
  • strong working knowledge of fire safety issues especially in residential buildings;
  • team player and valued partner with a high level of professional ethics, personal integrity and the ability to inspire confidence in all constituents;
  • deep knowledge and appreciation of current technology, and the ability to leverage technology to enhance safety;
  • a high degree of visibility and engagement throughout the school and the surrounding communities;
  • demonstrated emergency and crisis response experience and ability to  work closely with senior administration and faculty to appropriately educate and train the campus;
  • possess a leadership/management style that is confident, open, fair, approachable, and transparent;
  • ability to collect, analyze and effectively use data to make informed decisions for the school;
  • ability to effectively communicate and promote safety and security standards and expectations throughout the campus community;
  • proven success building a strong, cohesive department with well-trained, professional staff;
  • a visionary leader with the ability to translate strategic thinking into initiatives, operational directives, and policy formation;
  • appreciation for, and experience working with, a diverse student population;
  • highly energetic individual with a strong sense of self and ability to appropriately infuse humor and enthusiasm into the workplace and campus community;
  • ability to effectively communicate and promote safety and security standards and expectations throughout the campus community;
  • a strong community builder and collaborator, capable of building bridges to departments, faculty, staff, students, and the community;
  • a high commitment to both professional and personal growth and development as a manager, leader, and public safety expert; and deep commitment to the professional development and training of staff;
  • an innovative leader with a readiness to try new ideas and approaches;
  • possess an understanding of students’ academic, creative, recreational, and personal needs and an ability to comfortably interact with and support students; and
  • an in depth understanding of applicable laws, risk management, security procedure, policy, and protocol necessary to inform an immediate and correct response to emergency situations.

Overview of the Department

The Campus Safety and Security department at Hotchkiss works with all members of the community to provide a safe campus environment. It coordinates the school’s emergency response and safety protocols, which include managing alarm and door access systems. The department answers calls that come in to the school switchboard and coordinates with such local first-responders as fire and police departments, ambulance services, and 911 responders.

Some of the department’s regular services include electronic-door-lock access and scheduling, keys, fobs, locks, and door-opening, vehicle openings and jump-starts, student transports, campus inspections, and the on-campus locksmith. The department also manages event parking and security, wildlife assistance and control, vehicle scheduling for school activities, and monitoring of contractors, visitors, and deliveries.

The Hotchkiss School has partnered with Rave Mobile Safety to provide a mass-notification and alert system, which allows communication of important information about emergencies, serious weather conditions, and campus-wide events via email, text, and phone messages to anyone with a Hotchkiss network account.

Staff at the Campus Safety and Security office, located on the ground floor of the Coy dormitory, is on duty 24 hours per day, seven days a week.

The director of campus safety and security at the Hotchkiss School reports to the chief financial officer.

Leadership of the Department

Sandra J. “Sandy” Lynch was appointed chief financial officer at Hotchkiss in August of 2019. She is responsible for stewardship of physical and financial resources, risk management, information technology services, oversight of capital projects, and the operation of ancillary services.

Lynch came to Hotchkiss from Yale Divinity School, where she served for 16 years as chief administrative officer and director of finance and administration. In that role she had multiple financial and administrative responsibilities, including the oversight of an annual operating budget of $40 million and 260,000 square feet of buildings. She was instrumental in the implementation of the school’s Strategic Plan, including the goal of becoming need-blind by 2022.

Prior to joining Yale Divinity School, Lynch held various administrative and accounting positions at Yale, in government, and in the private sector. Lynch holds a B.S. in accounting from Post University and has taken graduate courses in accounting and taxation at the University of Hartford. In addition, she has completed the Stanford Graduate School of Business Executive Program for Women Leaders.

Institution & Location

Institutional Overview

The Hotchkiss School is a private, nonsectarian, independent boarding school located in Lakeville, Connecticut. Founded in 1891, it provides an excellent education to 600 students in grades nine through 12, and a small number of postgraduates. Students at Hotchkiss come from across the United States and around the world. Graduates attend many of the most selective universities and colleges. Seventy-two percent of faculty hold advanced degrees, and the average faculty member has more than 22 years of experience in education. Hotchkiss is one of the most-selective high schools in the nation, with an 18-percent acceptance rate and one of the largest endowments, of about $470 million.

Ninety-two percent of students at Hotchkiss participate in 64 available sports, and the arts are equally vital. Students, faculty, and staff also have the unique experience of working and learning at the school’s Fairfield Farm, a 287-acre plot located just a mile from campus, which provides invaluable education about nutrition, caring for farm animals, and real-world planting and harvesting. The farm supplies 30 percent of the produce in the dining hall during the fall semester, as well as a beautiful landscape for hiking and other activities. Hotchkiss has a national reputation for its commitment to sustainability and the use of “green” power.

Athletics facilities at Hotchkiss include a nine-hole golf course, 15 outdoor and three indoor tennis courts, a six-lane track, paddle-tennis courts, climbing walls, multiple outdoor playing fields, a ten-lane swimming pool, two hockey rinks, basketball courts, a fitness center, and eight squash courts. There are over 60 student clubs and organizations, multiple musical groups, many annual theatrical productions, and a museum-quality art gallery.

Institutional Background and History

The Hotchkiss School was founded in 1891 by Maria Bissell Hotchkiss, who was born half a mile from where the school now stands. Maria was married to Benjamin Berkeley Hotchkiss, who became one of the world’s leading arms manufacturers. After his death in 1885, Maria inherited his fortune and wanted to put it to good use in her community. She decided to establish a school on the 65-acre property referred to as Town Hill, with views to the north of the Berkshire-Taconic range and to the west of Lake Wononscopomuc.

Timothy Dwight, president of Yale University, established himself as a guiding force in the school’s early days, and believed that its mission should be to prepare young men for college—particularly Yale. Maria, however, did not want to establish a school “for the pampered sons of rich gentlemen;” she believed in making education accessible to local boys whose families could not afford the $600-per-year tuition. So she agreed to Dwight’s proposals on the condition that scholarships be offered to deserving students, pioneering a financial aid program long before other independent secondary schools. In its early days, Hotchkiss waived tuition for six students: three from Salisbury and three from Sharon. Maria also believed in building a strong connection with the surrounding community, appointing local leaders and businessmen to the Board of Trustees.

From the start, Maria experienced conflict with the men who became the first stewards of the school, in particular the Board of Trustees over which Dwight presided. Some of those conflicts were rooted in contemporary attitudes about women, and some in elitism: Maria was a farmer’s daughter, and the men on the Board of Trustees were in many cases well-educated captains of industry. As a result, she had to fight to make her voice heard.

In keeping with the principles of democracy and self-government, students sat at tables in the dining room with no direct supervision, and study hall was also unsupervised. The head of the Greek department at Phillips Andover Academy was selected as the first headmaster, and he brought with him the head of the Latin department at Andover to serve as associate master. Their legacy laid the foundation for the strong classics program at Hotchkiss today.

Nondenominational since its founding, Hotchkiss today retains its commitment to Maria’s founding principle of financial assistance, and provides some degree of financial aid to nearly a third of its students. Her family’s motto is etched in the frame of her portrait in the dining hall. It reads, “In recto decus: Glory consists in fair dealing.”

About Lakeville, Connecticut

Lakeville is a village within the town of Salisbury in Litchfield County, the most northwest part of Connecticut. The tristate marker for Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New York is located in the northwest corner of the town. Salisbury’s population in 2010 was about 3700. Until 1846, Lakeville was called “Furnace Village” due to the presence there of one of the first American blast furnaces used for making iron, particularly high-grade iron used in gun barrels and railroad wheels.

Today Salisbury retains its rural feel, with scenic views of the mountains and easy access to hiking, canoeing, skiing, and fishing. But it is just two hours north of New York City, an hour west of Hartford, and 75 minutes from Albany. It is also home to stock car races at Lime Rock Park and Eastern Ski Jumping Championships at Satre Hill.

Mission and Vision

“The Hotchkiss School seeks to inspire a diverse range of students who are committed to the betterment of self and society, and to cultivate in them at the highest standards of excellence, imagination and intellect, openness and personal integrity, empathy and responsible citizenship, that they may discover and fulfill their potential as individuals fully engaged in our world.

“The aim of The Hotchkiss School, since its foundation, has been to provide a dynamic environment for teaching and learning, as well as exceptional preparation for future study and fulfilling adult lives. Our residential community—the network of relationships created by the School’s people, place, and opportunities—is our most effective means of providing a transformative educational experience, where students may grow and gain greater understanding of themselves and their responsibilities to others. We believe that a healthy and inclusive learning community nourishes students physically, emotionally, and intellectually; fosters joy in learning and living with others; and ensures that all feel safe, seen, and supported.

“All members of the Hotchkiss community have a role in sustaining this environment. Therefore, we expect all to:

  • commit to high standards of scholarship and personal conduct;
  • open their minds and hearts to the views and experiences of others, creating space for all to belong and to thrive;
  • practice the values that nurture healthy relationships: respect, honesty, and compassion in particular;
  • risk and reflect in the pursuit of continual growth; and
  • exercise responsible citizenship through local and global engagement, service, and environmental stewardship.”

Strategic Plan

Our residential community—the network of relationships created by the School’s people, place, and opportunities—is our most effective means of providing a transformative educational experience, where students may grow and gain a greater understanding of themselves and their responsibilities to others.”

“These strategic priorities represent a combination of carefully considered programmatic and capital opportunities that will extend Hotchkiss’s comparative advantage as a student-centered learning community in pursuit of excellence, accessible to an even broader range of talented students.”

The Strategic Priorities Document:

https://resources.finalsite.net/images/v1558556542/hotchkiss/edjppp7dbvsmyccbv4ih/StrategicPriorities2019.pdf

Leadership

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.

Academic Programs and Faculty

At Hotchkiss, the average class size is 12, and the student-instructor ratio is four to one. The school offers more than 200 courses in seven departments. Academic work is supplemented by numerous opportunities outside the classroom, including international programs, co-curricular work at an organic farm, a state-of-the-art engineering and exploration lab, and various forms of community-based learning.

Hotchkiss is one of the few high schools in the U.S. that offers a diploma in classical studies, believing that the understanding it provides in our language’s origins leads to a higher level of communications and linguistics skills. In addition to the classics, students can also learn Chinese, French, German, Russian, and Spanish.

The school has 153 full and part-time faculty, 43 percent of whom identify as women, 57 percent as men. They have an average of over 22 years of educational experience, and 72 percent hold advanced degrees.

The Student Body

Hotchkiss has about 600 students who come from six continents, 35 countries, and 32 U.S. states. They are 51-percent male and 49-percent female, with 16 percent international students, 33 percent U.S. students of color, and 95 percent boarding students. Thirty-two percent of students receive financial aid.

Benefits Overview

Employees at the Hotchkiss School may enjoy:

  • Comprehensive medical plans with three options
  • Dental
  • Vision
  • Retirement benefits through TIAA, with generous school-matched contributions
  • Basic life insurance
  • Short and long-term disability plans
  • Tuition assistance by application for job-related, accredited education courses
  • Professional development funded through individual departments
  • Athletic facilities, including athletic center, outdoor track, playing fields, golf course, and tennis courts
  • Possible tuition remission or portable tuition for children’s secondary school education at Hotchkiss or a similar institution
  • Family access to community resources and athletic facilities
  • Childcare, infant through pre-school
  • Wellness programs, including exercise classes such as yoga, spin, HIIT, and Pilates
  • community meals and gatherings

For more information: https://www.hotchkiss.org/our-school/careers-at-hotchkiss/staff

Application & Nomination

Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. To apply for this position please click on the Apply button, complete the brief application process, and upload your resume and position-specific cover letter. Nominations for this position may be emailed to Heather J. Larabee at hjl@spelmanjohnson.com. Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Visit the Hotchkiss School website at www.hotchkiss.org

The Hotchkiss School is eager to consider applications from groups traditionally underrepresented in independent school communities.

The Hotchkiss School does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of age, gender, religion, race, color, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, disability, or national or ancestral origin in the administration of its educational policies, scholarship and loan programs, athletic and other School-administered programs, or in the administration of its hiring and employment practices.