The Mountain School names new leader

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BONDVILLE — Colleen Palmer has been chosen as head of school for The Mountain School at Winhall. Her selection by the trustees was unanimous, and she will begin her new role on July 1, succeeding Peter Ahlfeld.

"Among the several candidates from across the East Coast, Colleen's commitment to the K- 8 education in a small Vermont community stood out," the trustees said in a media release. "Her expertise and passion in growing young learners and supporting teachers is unquestionable."

Palmer, a lifelong educator, has served as superintendent of schools for three different districts in Connecticut — Westport, Weston and Monroe. She has experience as a teacher, counselor, assistant principal, principal and superintendent. She is currently an interim at Black River High/Middle School, providing support for student transition as the school closes.

Palmer earned her BA and Ph.D from from the University of Connecticut, where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa and summa cum laude. She received her master's and administration and supervision degrees from Southern Connecticut State University. She holds several Vermont and Connecticut certifications.

"Aside from Colleen's stellar career, she has impressed the Search Committee and MSW BOTs with her easy demeanor and humor," the trustees said. "We have been struck by her insights and thoughtfulness with the students, teachers and parents. She is excited to get started in our independent school and build on 'Vermont is our classroom' and grow the outdoor program."

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