The governing board of Woodland School in Ladera has hired Marja Brandon, former head of school for the Pennsylvania School for the Deaf and founding head of the Seattle Girls' School, as its new head of school.
Woodland is a private school with approximately 285 students in preschool through eighth grade.
Ms. Brandon has 30 years of private and public school experience as a teacher and administrator. She speaks and writes frequently on education topics including system improvement, reform and innovation.
She has a master of education degree in counseling and consulting psychology from Harvard University and a bachelor of arts degree in psychology and studio art from Wellesley College. She was a Klingenstein research fellow at Columbia University's Teachers College.
Awards and honors given to Ms. Brandon include: the 2006 U.S. Senators Hillary Clinton and Maria Cantwell Women of Valor Award, the 2004 Stanley O. McNaughton Golden Apple Educator of the Year Award, the 2010 Brotherton Community Champion Award, the 2007 Soroptimist Making a Difference Award and the 2006 Puget Sound Business Journal Woman of Influence Award.
Michelle Morcos Smith, chair of Woodland's governing board, said the board's unanimous decision to appoint Ms. Brandon "was based on the enthusiastic endorsements of the search committee and members of the Woodland community."
Ms. Brandon said she is "thrilled to join the Woodland community."
"The students are so poised, articulate, and engaged," she said. "The teachers and staff are dedicated, caring, and clearly skilled. The school is in wonderful shape and I look forward to learning more in-depth about the school and its community."