The Board of Trustees of Duchesne Academy of the Sacred Heart is pleased to announce the selection of our next Head of School. By a unanimous vote, the Board agreed to extend the offer to Ms. Hillary Feerick-Hillenbrand.
November 18, 2022
Dear Duchesne Community,
The Board of Trustees of Duchesne Academy of the Sacred Heart is pleased to announce the selection of our next Head of School. By a unanimous vote, the Board agreed to extend the offer to Ms. Hillary Feerick-Hillenbrand, who has accepted the position.
Ms. Feerick-Hillenbrand comes to Duchesne from one of the top K-12 Catholic schools in Florida, Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart in Miami. Ms. Feerick-Hillenbrand serves as the Head of the Upper School, which is ranked as the #1 Catholic High School in Florida and is nationally ranked at #5 among the Best Catholic High Schools in America.
Ms. Feerick-Hillenbrand brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the Head of School role. A product of an all-girls, Catholic, independent school education, Ms. Feerick-Hillenbrand attended Marymount School of New York from Kindergarten to grade 12. She holds a B.A. in English and French from Skidmore College, and an M.A. in English from the University of Miami, Florida. Ms. Feerick-Hillenbrand taught for two years at the University of Miami then joined the faculty at Monsignor Edward Pace High School where she taught in her Major - English. Her career continued and spanned some 20 years at St. Andrew’s School, a nationally recognized Episcopal, Pre-K through grade 12 day and boarding school for 1,300 students from over 40 countries, in Boca Raton, Florida. Ms. Feerick-Hillenbrand taught English, chaired the English Department, chaired the Junior Kindergarten through Grade 12 English Department,
and served as Acting Head of Upper School at St. Andrew’s School before departing for Carrollton. Since 2018, she has been the Head of Upper School at Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart. She is extremely knowledgeable in curriculum across disciplines and enjoys leading teachers to challenge themselves in this area, especially in instructional delivery and mission-driven pedagogy.
The Board of Trustees would like to acknowledge the support and guidance of Carney Sandoe and Associates who partnered with the Search Committee in conducting a national Head of School Search. We are deeply grateful for the wisdom and experience of Mr. Robert Vitalo and Ms. Rhonda Durham.
The Head of School Search team will disband, and a Transition Team will be formed, sponsored by the Board of Trustees. Ms. Feerick-Hillenbrand will begin to transition with Ms. Patricia Swenson at the first of the year and will join our community beginning July 1, 2023. We look forward to welcoming Ms. Feerick-Hillenbrand and her family to Houston – husband Jeff, daughter Shannon (Carrollton, 2022) who is a freshman at Brown University in Rhode Island, and son Quinn, a high school senior who will begin college in the Fall.
In closing, we have been blessed with the wisdom and guidance of the Holy Spirit as we undertook our Head of School Search process. Ms. Swenson has led Duchesne for the past eleven years with courage and confidence. She solidified the school’s position, took academics to a higher level, and elevated our standing within our city, always with the best interests of the girls as the focus. She will now hand off to Ms. Feerick-Hillenbrand to continue and build on the excellent work she began. The Board is also thankful for the support and commitment of the Duchesne community during this Head of School Search process. We ask for your continued prayers and support for both our outgoing Head of School and our incoming Head of School – for the Wisdom of St. Madeleine Sophie, the Courage of St. Rose Philippine, and the Faithfulness of Mater Admirabilis.
For the Board of Trustees,