On Monday evening, September 17, St. Mark's held its annual "Celebration of Education and Service of Installation" in Belmont Chapel, at the conclusion of seated dinner in the School's dining hall. Ten new faculty were welcomed, the 2018-19 St. Mark's choir made its debut, and the Rev. Barbara Talcott delivered a sermon entitled "Wisdom, Compassion, and Humility."
The hymn "For the Splendor of Creation" was sung. Following the hymn, Head of School John C. Warren '74 welcomed the nine new faculty, and Rev. Talcott formally installed these new St. Mark's teachers, leading all those present in additional prayers from the SM book. The choir, conducted by Director of Music and Arts Department chair James Wallace, then sang Martin Howe's "Day by Day" as their first anthem of the School year. After readings from students, Rev. Talcott delivered her sermon.
Mr. Warren, Assistant Head of School/Dean of Faculty Samantha Brennan, and the Monitors then continued a St. Mark's tradition, presenting each new faculty member with gifts symbolizing their professional responsibilities. Lindsay Allen (Advancement), Robert Bauer (Science), Caleb Cochran (Communications), Jonathan Golden (Library), Daniel Mertsch (Modern Languages), Emily Michelson '13 (History), David Palmer (Science), Katrina Solter (Religion), Jordan Studevan (College Counseling), and Yuhon Xu (Modern Languages) were all installed as the newest members of the St. Mark's faculty.
The service ended with the School Prayer and the school hymn ("Sun of My Soul"). Faculty and VI Formers then recessed for coffee and dessert in the Faculty Room hosted by the Warrens.
"I am very proud of the intellectual vibrancy and strength of character possessed by every one of our new faculty members," commented Head of School John Warren '74. "Our Evening Chapel Installation ceremony is a wonderful way to formally welcome this highly talented group into the St. Mark's community."
Here are the newest members of the St. Mark's faculty:
Lindsay Allen became a member of the St. Mark's community in March as Chief Advancement Officer, as well as joining the Senior Administrative Team. She previously served as Assistant Vice President for University Advancement & Campaign Director at Clark University, as well as in the Advancement Departments of Boston College and the University of Utah. Lindsay and her husband John live off-campus in Framingham with their two sons, Lucas and Brooks, and their Chocolate Lab, Milo.
Rob Bauer joins the Science Department to assist in the one-year sabbatical coverage of Physics. He has previously served as a Substitute Teacher and the Head Soccer Coach at Dana Hall. He also has extensive experience tutoring Physics, Algebra, and Spanish in many of this area's schools. Born in Perú, he is a native Spanish speaker. Rob lives in Natick with his family, including: his wife Carmelina; children Alexandria, Raffaele, and Daniela; their dog Chacho; and eight chickens. (He reports enjoying delicious eggs in the morning.)
Caleb Cochran took on the role of Director of Communications and Marketing for St. Mark's in April. Before coming to St. Mark's, he served as Executive Director of Communications at Wentworth Institute of Technology. He has also held positions at Bentley University, MIT, and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Caleb earned a B.A. in English from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and an M.A. in Publishing and Writing from Emerson College. He lives off-campus in Sudbury with his wife Natalie and their two sons, Cameron and Ryan.
Jonathan Golden is excited to transition from acting to permanent Director of Library Services at St. Mark's. His involvement in the SM community over the past year will enable him to develop strategies to better serve the interests of students and faculty in their learning endeavors. Jonathan is completing his Ph.D. in Library and Information Science at Simmons College and has previous experience teaching database design. He and his wife Caitlin live off-campus in Acton. They had their first child, Judah, in June.
Daniel Mertsch is joining the Modern Languages Department as the new German Teacher. He comes to St. Mark's after 10 years at Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall School in Waltham, where he served as the Director of their Learning Support Department. He has considerable experience teaching German, was educated in Germany, and is a native German speaker. Daniel has coached soccer and basketball and has a strong interest in robotics. He and his wife Mary will live in Coolidge with their young sons Sebastian and Oliver, and their dog Roscoe.
Emily Michelson '13
Alumna Emily Michelson '13 is expanding her role at St. Mark's in 2018-2019. In addition to continuing to serve as the Assistant Director of Auxiliary Programs, she will be living in Thayer and teaching one section of The Global Seminar. Emily majored in French & International Relations at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, and is passionate about global citizenship. Active in the St. Mark's Young Alumni Leadership Council (she currently serves as that organization's co-chair), Emily never misses an opportunity to contribute positively to the St. Mark's School community.
Dave Palmer comes to the St. Mark's School community with many years of experience as a teacher (Physics, Biology, & Chemistry) at Lawrence High School and Acton-Boxborough Regional High Schools, as well as professional experience as an engineer. He'll joins the Science Department to teach Physics and looks forward to getting involved in extracurriculars, including robotics and coaching. Dave has two adult daughters, Kendra and Lexi, enjoys playing soccer, hockey, and tennis, and lives in Groton with his dog, Nico, and cat, Boo.
Katie Solter joins the Religion Department to teach classes and serve as the Assistant Chaplain. Previously, Katie has been the Chaplain of St. Patrick's Episcopal Day School in Washington D.C. since 2014. She has also taught religion and has served as an assistant lacrosse coach. Prior to St. Patrick's, Katie served various church posts in Maine, New Hampshire, and Connecticut, as well as abroad in France. Katie will be living on School Street with her husband Tom and their children: Riley (20), Theo (16), and Laney (10).
Jordan Studevan joined the St. Mark's community in April of 2018 as the Assistant Director of College Counseling. Previously, he worked with his family business and as the Logistics Coordinator at City Year in Philadelphia. He is a graduate of Franklin & Marshall College, with a degree in Economics and Government. St. Marks athletics will benefit from Jordan's experience as a varsity football player at F&M, as well as his love for playing basketball. He lives in Sawyer along with his new dog, Ace, who is sure to become very popular on campus.
Yuhong Xu is looking forward to teaching Chinese for the Modern Language Department during our Chinese teacher's Family Leave. She comes to St. Mark's with many years teaching Mandarin at schools here in Massachusetts, including the Brimmer and May School. She has a Masters in Curriculum & Instruction from Boston College, and is excited to collaborate with all members of the School community. Yuhong lives in Worcester with her husband Quay, their children Ellie and Abraham.