The Morristown-Beard School Board of Trustees has voted unanimously to appoint Elizabeth “Liz” Morrison as the next Head of School, effective July 1, 2021, on the retirement of Peter Caldwell in June 2021. Liz will be the first woman to serve as Head of School for Morristown-Beard School since the Morristown School and the Beard School merged in 1971. She joins the ranks of only a handful of other women in the state serving in the position.
Liz comes to MBS from Antilles School, an independent, coeducational college preparatory school in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, where she has served as Head of School since 2016. She brings more than three decades of experience in independent school education, having served as Assistant Head of School at the Millbrook School in Millbrook, New York before joining Antilles School.
“We are confident that under Liz Morrison’s leadership, Morristown-Beard School will attain new heights, our horizons will continue to expand, and our students will continue to flourish,” said John Fay, President of the Board of Trustees. “We look forward to welcoming her this summer, and we wish her unprecedented success!”
Liz’s appointment comes as a result of a thorough and inclusive process conducted by the Search Committee, under the leadership of Trustee Paul Hawkins ’85, ‘P18, ‘P20, and in conjunction with the experienced educational search firm, Carney Sandoe & Associates. The Search Committee was comprised of trustees, faculty and administration members working collaboratively to evaluate and select our next Head of School. Liz was selected from a national pool of highly qualified and talented candidates of diverse racial and gender backgrounds after a thorough search process that engaged students, parents, alumni, faculty, staff, and trustees.
“We were thrilled when she enthusiastically accepted our invitation,” said Mr. Fay. “Liz was chosen for her all-encompassing experience in education, her passion for teaching and learning, and especially for her ability to connect with students and earn the respect of faculty, and her commitment to diversity and inclusion. With a student population at Antilles School that is almost 50 percent students of color, Liz has grown in her understanding of the complexity of race in independent schools, and she is striving to create a curriculum and community where all students feel a deep sense of belonging. It’s clear that she understands the important role that the Head of School plays in shaping school culture.”
The MBS Board of Trustees was impressed by the breadth of her credentials as an educator and administrator. At the Millbrook School, she held positions as Dean of Students, Academic Dean, and Director of College Counseling. Earlier in her career, Liz served as a math teacher and Chair of the Math Department at Oakwood Friends. More recently, Liz was inducted into the Headmasters Association, a highly prestigious association of only 100 members.
A graduate of The Bryn Mawr School, Liz holds a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology from the University of Maryland and a Master of Science in Education from the University of Pennsylvania. Throughout the search process, Liz’s supervisors and colleagues were uniform in their praise for her professionalism, work ethic, communications, and team-building skills, along with her business and curriculum development acumen.
On a more personal level, Liz grew up in Baltimore, Maryland; she was a proud member of the 1986 University of Maryland NCAA Division 1 National Champion Women’s Lacrosse team; has a son and daughter in their twenties, along with two adult stepchildren; her husband Tom is a corporate pilot; and she plans to reside in New Jersey near MBS.
“My husband, Tom, and I are excited to move to New Jersey, and thrilled to join the MBS community. From my first introduction to the search committee, I felt a love of teaching from the faculty, the power of collaboration from the administrators, a sense of gratitude and pride from the Trustees, parents, students and alumni. I share a belief in the value of an inclusive community, and its potential to transform lives,” said Liz Morrison. “I am grateful to be joining a school community that is willing to grow and learn and aspires to be an institution where every student and family feels seen and valued in the life of the School. The MBS motto, ‘To the stars through adversity’ really spoke to me as I envision a rich learning environment that is rooted in tradition while being simultaneously progressive, valuing the independence of mind and full participation.”