Founders' Profiles

Jacqueline Smethurst

Jacqueline Smethurst is a nationally recognized thinker and leader in education. Since 1998, Jacqueline has guided the founding of several innovative and successful independent and charter schools, and assisted dozens more schools in the growth of their curriculum, governance and fundraising. As Head of School at Northfield Mount Hermon, she led a comprehensive redesign of the school's educational program. She has served as Interim Head of Sage Hill School and The Pegasus School.

Jacqueline holds a B.A. and M.A, from Oxford University, and is an Honorary Fellow of her alma mater, St. Hilda's College, at Oxford. She came to the United States as a Fulbright Scholar and holds an Ed. D. from the University of Massachusetts. Her current and recent trusteeships include Concord Academy, Ursuline Academy, Saltwater Institute, and the American Friends of St. Hilda's College, Oxford, and she has been a director of the National Association of Independent Schools.

Jacqueline and David founded Wingspan Partnerships, a non-profit, to narrow the education gap through public-private partnerships. They work at the school, district, and state level, and now support the work of the National Network of Schools in Partnership.

David Drinkwater

David Drinkwater is a distinguished educator and administrator, whose career spans higher education and k-12 schools, with a continuing focus on innovation in relations between academe and community.

He has served as Dean of Students at Amherst College and Cornell University; and Assistant Professor and Associate Dean at SUNY New Paltz, as well as Head of School at Friends Academy and Metairie Park Country Day School.

David holds B.A., M.A. and D. Phil. degrees in History from Oxford University. He has been a guide and coach in school transitions, most recently at Blue Oak School, where he served as Interim Head. He has served on civic and educational boards that include the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, New Orleans Leadership Institute, College of Preachers, Sea Education Association, Sonoma Academy, and NapaLearns (a model of community engagement for county-wide school reform).


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