Announcement of Appointment
On behalf of the Head of School search committee, we are thrilled to announce that following a vote of approval by the Board of Trustees, Michael Spencer will be Oregon Episcopal School’s next Head of School, effective July 1, 2023. After an extensive, world-wide search spanning seven months, the committee has concluded that Michael’s character, experience, and leadership qualities make him extremely well qualified to lead OES into the future.
Michael begins the position as OES Head of School effective July 1, 2023
Oregon Episcopal School's next Head of School Michael Spencer currently serves as Vice Rector for Faculty (Assistant Head of School) at St. Paul's School in Concord, New Hampshire. He earned his A.B. in philosophy/classics, magna cum laude, from the College of the Holy Cross. After completing coursework in Yale’s Teacher Education Program, he received his Master of Divinity, summa cum laude, graduating from Yale Divinity School as the ranking scholar. He subsequently earned a Certificate in Anglican Studies from Berkeley Divinity School at Yale completing coursework for the Master of Sacred Theology. Michael also holds a Certificate in School Management and Leadership from Harvard Business School and Harvard Graduate School of Education.
After college, Michael decided to try a brief stint teaching as an intern in the Advanced Studies Program at St. Paul’s. That experience changed the direction of his life. After working at Tabor Academy and the Milton Academy summer programs, he went on to The Taft School where he served for 10 years as school chaplain and dean of spiritual life and as founder and director of the Humanities curriculum integrating Philosophy, Religion, English, and Ethics.
In 2007, he joined the St. Paul’s faculty as dean of chapel and member of the Humanities Department. As dean of chapel, he developed a dynamic ministry and distinctive cathedral model for chaplaincy: expanding initiatives, establishing interfaith and Episcopal programs, developing new local and global outreach partnerships, and deepening the integration of social justice, diversity, environmental stewardship, and arts into school ministry.
Appointed as dean of faculty in 2015 and subsequently as Vice Rector for Faculty in 2017, Michael's work has included revising the hiring process to incorporate data-driven assessment, reviewing school policies and procedures to strengthen healthy culture and deepen faculty training, developing a comprehensive instrument to assess workload and track professional learning, engaging in strategic planning for the School, and serving as co-chair of the community conduct board, school accreditation, and on many other committees. As a Cape Verdean-American and first-generation college graduate, Michael's lived cultural experience informs his personal and professional commitment to the work of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice. He has led efforts to strengthen the diversity of the faculty, develop strategic direction for DEI initiatives, and move the school forward toward becoming a Beloved Community.
Nationally recognized for his work, Michael served as treasurer of the governing board of the National Association of Episcopal Schools (NAES) and currently serves as secretary and chair of advancement. He is the author of published articles, sermons, and poetry including a curriculum in Applied Ethics. He has presented at many national conferences including NAIS, TABS, and NAES. A former delegate to the International Parliament of World Religions, he served on the Graduate Council of Berkeley Divinity School at Yale, and on the board of directors for Forward Movement Publications.
Michael is married to Amy, a middle and elementary school educator, and together they have two children: Aidan, age 23, and Katherine, age 18. His personal interests include gardening, cooking, reading, hiking, and rowing.
Search Committee for Next OES Head of School
- Paul Ehrlich, Chair of Head of School Search Committee, OES Trustee, OES Parent, and General Counsel, Global Brands & Americas, adidas
- The Rev. Vijendran (VJ) Sathyaraj, Interim Upper School Chaplain, Religion & Philosophy Department Chair, Upper School Religion Teacher, current grandparent, and grandparent of two OES Alumni
- Karen Seder, Middle School Math Teacher, parent of two OES Alumni
- The Rt. Rev. Diana Akiyama M.Div., Ph.D., Chair of the OES Board, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Oregon
- Carol Bull, All School Parent Partnership Chair and OES Parent
- Dan Drinkward ’95, OES Board President, OES Parent, alumnus, and Vice President of Hoffman Construction Company
- Lucy Reynolds, OES Trustee, OES Parent, and Owner & Coach, Olerai Leadership