Leadership Fellows Program

Oct 21, 2019 11:00AM—Oct 22, 2019 3:00PM

Cost $3,600 members; ($5,400 non-members)

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Leadership Fellows Program

This application-based year-long cohort for experienced school leaders from Northern and Southern California supports the unique demands of independent school leaders—the only program of its kind in the state!

RETREAT: Oct 21-22, 2019 at Hotel Amarano in Burbank

SESSION 1: Dec 13, 2019 at Lick-Wilmerding High School in San Francisco

SESSION 2: Feb 3, 2020 at Lick-Wilmerding High School in San Francisco

SESSION 3: Mar 16, 2020 at Oakwood School


The job of an independent school administrator is complicated, demanding, and rewarding. Often working directly with various constituent groups, school administrators are confronted with a myriad of complex issues to sort through. School administrators need support, mentorship, and new knowledge to be effective and personally-fulfilled.

This year-long fellowship for experienced educators from Northern and Southern California supports the unique demands of independent school leaders—the only program of its kind in California! Facilitated by two experienced, long-time Heads of School, the Leadership Fellows Program offers practical knowledge and skills about independent school leadership, as well as professional and personal support.

This program boasts a strong line-up of guest speakers in the fields of hiring and retention, advancement, finance, facilities, HR, internal and external community relations, and board management. Past guest speakers have included current and former heads of school and board chairs. Each meeting will include an impressive group of experts that will share their knowledge and leadership journeys. Case studies, problem-based discussions, and relevant readings will challenge participants to reflect on their roles and encourage the development of their skills for their work in their current schools.

Registration is closed! Our 2019 cohort has been selected.


I had no idea how much I would learn from my cohort group, and how bonded we would become during this process. The role playing was incredibly helpful, and all the guest speakers brought excellent (and differing) perspectives to the conversation.

I loved that the group was coming from different types of schools (sizes, grades, etc.). Building those bonds is what is the most important to me! The program leaders are both invested and extremely knowledgeable.

I appreciated knowing that not everyone in the program wants to be a director, that there are other ways to lead. Also, It was reaffirming to hear that other schools are having the same issues as mine, and seeing perspectives from other departments was extremely helpful and opened my eyes to some other job opportunities.


  • To provide experienced K-12 administrators with the knowledge, skills, and resources important for senior level leadership.

  • To address topics such as leadership EQ, communication, team building, systems thinking, strategic planning, and organizational health and behavior.

  • To develop and strengthen relationships and networks of support among school leaders.


This is a selective program and all applications will be reviewed to ensure that the cohort is balanced, diverse, and well-qualified.

Application components:

  1. Submit your application
  2. Resume - Submit with application or via email to hoffman@catdc.org
  3. Pay $500 deposit on Eventbrite (Deposit is refunded if you are not admitted into the program, but is non-refundable if you are admitted.)
  4. Head of School endorsement (form will be sent by the CATDC directly to the applicant's Head upon submission of application)



Eric Temple

Eric Temple currently serves as The Head of School at Lick-Wilmerding High School, a coed day 9-12 high school in San Francisco serving 530 students. Before joining Lick-Wilmerding eight years ago, for seven years Eric headed The Carey School, a pre-kindergarten through fifth grade coed day school in San Mateo. Eric began his career teaching English and as the Dean of Students at Ojai Valley Upper School, then moved to Crystal Springs Uplands School where he taught English, was the Dean of Studies and Assistant Head of School.  Eric has served on many school boards, the California Association of Independent Schools board, and currently serves on the NAIS Board where he chairs the Equity and Justice Committee. For five years Eric served on the faculty of the NAIS Institute for New Heads where he taught about understanding school culture. Eric holds a BA (Boston College) and MA (UMass – Amherst) in English Literature and a MEd in Educational Leadership (Teachers College, Columbia University). In his spare time he enjoys woodworking, gardening, and traveling with his husband.


Coreen Hester

Coreen Ruiz Hester was an independent school head for 20 years—ten at The American School in London, 2007-17 (preK-12, 1,350 students) and ten years at The Hamlin School in San Francisco, 1997-2007 (K-8, 400 girls). Prior to that, Coreen served as High School Principal in London, Assistant Head at The Branson School, and a college counselor, dean, and English teacher in Michigan and northern California, USA.An experienced trustee of several independent schools, Coreen currently serves on the board and executive committee of the Academy of International School Heads. She also served on the board of the Educational Collaborative for International Schools, based in London. She has recently been elected to serve on the boards of French American School and The Branson School, both in Northern California.Coreen holds undergraduate and master’s degrees from Stanford University. She earned her degree in English with minors in Italian and history. Coreen has also done additional graduate work at Bread Loaf Graduate School of English and UC Berkeley.


Date: October 21-22, 2019

Time: Begins at 11:00am on Oct 21st and ends at 3:00pm on Oct 22nd.

Location: Hotel Amarano (Google Maps)


  • Identifying your strengths as a leader and defining leadership

  • Communication and Team Building

  • School Mission and Culture


Cancellation Policy

Life happens. We understand that there will be times when you cannot attend a workshop that you have registered and paid for. We strive to be as helpful and flexible as possible when things out of your control happen. Please visit our FAQ page for detailed information about our cancellation policy and answers to frequently asked questions about enrollment and membership.