Mon, 02/25/2019
Cardigan Mountain School
62 Alumni Dr
Canaan, NH 03741

ISANNE Interim Executive Director

Position Description: 


July 1, 2019 - June 30, 2020

Information for Candidates


ISANNE is a membership organization comprised of independent K-12 schools throughout the region. ISANNE unites, supports and promotes its diverse member schools in a changing world.


The Independent Schools Association of Northern New England (ISANNE) unites, supports, and promotes its diverse schools in serving our changing communities and world.

Statement of Purpose

ISANNE is passionately committed to cultivating the leadership needed to ensure the sustainability, vitality and relevance of independent education in Northern New England.

Gathering and empowering exceptional people through committed advocacy, effective programming and extensive networking builds the capacity to continue delivering transformative education in the face of intense external pressures.

Core Values

The following statements reflect the underlying foundation upon which ISANNE will conduct all of its work as an association.

  • Professional Support- ISANNE's primary objective is to strengthen the future vitality of northern New England independent schools through support and professional development of Heads of Schools and all school leadership.
  • Visionary Development- ISANNE is committed to offering its member schools access to the best thinking and research regarding the rapidly evolving nature of schools and their programs. These resources are intended to support the strategic curricular, programmatic, financial, campus and leadership planning and development at member schools.
  • Collective Action- ISANNE will foster collaboration among independent schools promoting innovative and dynamic solutions to challenges in the ever evolving world of education.
  • Independence- ISANNE embraces the many types of independent schools that make up its total membership. Member schools are provided the opportunity to network and develop programs aligned with each school’s mission and the students they serve. Together ISANNE and its member schools stand for the values of independent school education in the face of local, state, and national trends toward standardization and regulation of education.
  • Service and Public Action- ISANNE believes that independent schools have a public purpose and responsibility to improve the common good. We will encourage our schools to be involved with their local communities and to foster active citizenship.

Early History

The Independent Schools Association of Northern New England was founded in the 1970s as a support organization for school heads. In the beginning, it included primarily a small number of boarding schools; as time passed, by-laws were adopted and more schools began to join. The cornerstone for membership from the beginning was that all schools be accredited by The New England Association of Schools and Colleges, NEASC.

In the mid 1980s the organization began promoting the idea that other administrative professionals at member schools should begin to meet as well. As a result, the deans, assistant heads, admission, development and business office professionals began organizing their own workshops and conferences under the ISANNE name.

In 1992 the Association was first incorporated and recognized by the IRS as a 501 C 6 nonprofit. From the beginning, the Association employed a part-time executive secretary. In 1999, ISANNE hired its first Executive Director, Vince Durnan, with expanded responsibilities, but still on a part-time basis. In 2004, Douglas Cummings was appointed as the Executive Director. From 2005-2010 the Executive Director began providing more support to all affinity groups and accepting the leadership and management of all ISANNE conferences. In 2005 the association managed three conferences, attracting approximately 125 total participants. In 2012-13, ISANNE offered over 20 conferences with a total of 679 participants.

In 2006 the organization adopted its first formal strategic plan and on July 1, 2007, the executive directorship became a full-time position. The Association was re-incorporated as a 501 C 3 by the IRS in 2007. In 2011, The Association Board adopted its second strategic plan with initiatives in the areas of professional development, inclusivity and collegiality, collective action, promotion of services and finance. Today ISANNE’s mission is to unite, support and promote its diverse member schools in a changing world.

ISANNE is an association of 62 schools, which employ over 2700 teachers and serve over 22,000 students. Among its members, there are 27 boarding schools, 16 day schools, and 19 town academies. Schools range in size from 10 students to 3,300 students. The Association represents many internationally known schools as well as schools still in their infancy. This diversity is truly valued by all members of the association.

The Association partners with NEASC in many ways maintaining a close relationship to promote the accreditation of all member schools. ISANNE is also an active member of The Independent School Association Network, ISAnet, and NAIS.


The Interim Executive Director is an ex-officio and non-voting member of the ISANNE Board of Trustees and performs all administrative duties necessary for the proper functioning of the organization. The Interim Executive Director works with the standing committees to ensure they are working effectively.

The Interim ISANNE Executive Director responsibilities include:

  • Assuring the association’s adherence to its stated mission and vision
  • Managing the overall financial and asset wealth of the association, under the guidance of the board
  • Overseeing all aspects of staff administration, including hiring, training, termination, salary administration, and performance evaluation
  • Providing the management logistics and information resources necessary to assist the board in its governance role
  • Generating new ideas and methods for accomplishing the mission and strategic plans
  • Communicating regularly with member schools and with state and national affiliates
  • Planning and coordinating meetings of the board
  • Developing the presence and reputation of the association on behalf of its membership
  • Attending, when appropriate, meetings of state and national affiliates
  • Serving as staff liaison to the board and its committees
  • Keeping the board and the membership aware of issues of national and regional concern
  • Evaluating the association’s programs and activities
  • Ability to assess the professional development needs of ISANNE schools


Knowing the vital leadership role that is necessary in Northern New England independent education, the ISANNE Board of Trustees seeks candidates who:

  • Understand and appreciate the culture of the region served by the association
  • Possess outstanding people skills
  • Are proficient with technology, including contemporary social media platforms
  • Hold an advanced degree
  • Demonstrate strong oral and written communication skills
  • Have experience in managing budgets
  • Are entrepreneurial
  • Evince strong organizational and management skills
  • Are able to maintain good relationships with member schools
  • Will inspire respect and confidence in others
  • Are diplomatic
  • Have prior senior leadership experience in independent schools
  • Can confidently organize and motivate volunteers
  • Delegate effectively
  • Have demonstrated a capacity to both lead and manage effectively

ISANNE is an equal opportunity employer, and compensation packages are open and competitive.

Visit for more information about the association’s programs and services.

Interested candidates should send inquiries and their materials electronically to:

ISANNE Search Committee



Northern New England
Start Date: 
Monday, 1 July 2019
Submit Applications to: 

Interested candidates should send inquiries and their materials electronically to: 

ISANNE Search Committee