New Head of School named
Posted November 14, 2011
Mrs. Rachel Deems has been named as the next Head of School at Spartanburg Day School. Her appointment will begin July 1, 2012. Mrs. Deems’s appointment was announced Monday, by Billy Webster, head of the search committee.
Webster said that over the last decade, Spartanburg Day School has flourished under the leadership of current Headmaster, Chris Dorrance, who will retire at the end of the 2012 school year after 11 years at SDS. “Mr. Dorrance’s assistance in the search process insures that his legacy of energy, passion, and commitment will live on in our next Head of School,” said Webster.
“I am honored to join the Spartanburg Day School as the next Head of School. SDS is an extraordinary community of learners, a leader among independent schools, and a true gift to the greater Spartanburg community,” Deems said. “Spartanburg Day School is known for its excellence in academic programs, the fine arts, athletics, and service. Its graduates tell a story of its success as they have excelled in their collegiate and professional pursuits, providing leadership to their communities and service to their fellow man.”
Deems has over 30 years of experience in education. She is currently Head of The Westfield School, in Perry, Georgia, where she has been since 2008.
Before accepting the Westfield School headship, Mrs. Deems was Director of Development at Stratford Academy in Macon, Georgia, a position that she held for nine years. As Director of Development, she provided leadership in the areas of advancement, alumni, marketing, and public relations. Prior to Stratford, she worked at Mercer University Atlanta, where she held positions as Chief Administrative Officer, Assistant Provost, and Dean of Students on a campus of 3,000 students and Mercer University in Macon, Georgia where she held positions as Assistant to the President and Assistant Vice President. Her career in education began in 1979 after graduating from Judson College, where for the next nine years she held positions as Director of Alumnae Affairs, Director of Adult Degree Programs, and Vice-President and Dean of Students.
Deems is active in community and professional organizations. She is currently a Board of Trustee Member of the Georgia Independent Schools Association, Accreditation Team Member of the Southern Association Independent Schools, Perry Chamber of Commerce Education Committee, and a Rotary International member. In 2011, she was named Outstanding Woman in Education in Houston County, Georgia.
In addition to her B.A. from Judson College, Deems earned her M.A. at the University of Alabama, where she also did graduate work toward her Ph.D. Deems is married to Ken Deems and has a daughter, Morgan Guice, who is a senior at the University of Alabama.