At St. Andrew's-Sewanee, students are being challenged in every aspect of their lives and are answering those challenges because they thirst for knowledge of the Good, the True, and the Beautiful. This is an extraordinary school that turns out confident young men and women who are turned on to learning.Karl J. Sjolund, Head of School
M.A., Columbia University
Karl Sjolund's passion for the boarding school model of education began with his own experience as a boarding student at Virginia Episcopal School (VES). When his tenure at SAS began in 2016, he brought a lifetime of experience of living and working in boarding schools.
Mr. Sjolund formerly led Salem Academy, a boarding and day school, like SAS, with both an essential church affiliation and a reciprocal relationship with its neighboring college. He spent 20 years at VES where he served in a wide range of administrative positions, taught, and coached. An active leader in the field of education, he is former treasurer of the board of North Carolina Association of Independent Schools and former advisory board member of World View at UNC Chapel Hill. Mr. Sjolund earned an M.A. in Private School Leadership through Columbia University's prestigious Klingenstein Fellows program. He received his B.A. in Economics at Virginia Military Institute, which he attended on a Division-I baseball scholarship.
Mr. Sjolund is a man of great faith, confirmed in the Episcopal Church, and committed to the Episcopal educational model that values diversity in culture and thought. His faith, honesty, and thoughtfulness are in keeping with the best leadership that SAS has enjoyed. He and his wife, Susan, reside on the SAS campus with their Golden Retriever, Daisy.
M.S. Biology, University of Texas
A woman of many talents, Dean Black has taught biology, English, history, and math, and assisted in the Technology Department. In 2010, she established the Academic Support Program at SAS. Prior to coming to SAS, she taught and coached at TMI - The Episcopal School of Texas, and at Oak Hill School and Montgomery Bell Academy in Nashville. A member of the University of the South's Athletic Hall of Fame, Coach Black was a three-time member of the All-SCAC tennis and took 4th place in the 1990 NCAA Division III Women's Tennis Championships in the team competition. In 2008, she coached the SAS girls' team to the State Championship and was named TSSAA Girls' Tennis Coach of the Year. Dean Black chairs the Internal Administrative Team and the Staffing Committee and is vice-chair of the Administrative Team and Retention Committee.
Lesley Cole joined SAS as Director of Advancement in 2018. She has an extensive background in the non-profit and corporate sectors. As Director of Development for Oglethorpe University, she helped to set the strategic direction for the Development and Alumni Relations department. During her tenure, Oglethorpe successfully concluded major campaigns of $50 million and $20 million. In her previous position as Director of the Annual Fund at Oglethorpe, Lesley managed multiple record-setting Annual Funds. Before joining Oglethorpe, she served as Lakeview Academy's Director of Development and managed domestic and international projects for National Data Corporation. She enjoys travel and hiking and is currently working on her first novel.
B.A., Public Relations, Otterbein College
Jennifer Dillon '82 is a seasoned accounting and operations executive with a passion for small business and educational not-for-profit organizations. She is strategic-minded and has a proven track record of establishing necessary policies and procedures to enhance compliance and productivity. Dillon was previously CFOO at the Highlands School in Birmingham, Ala. Prior to that, she was Director of Finance and Operations of the Congressional School in Falls Church, Va., and Powhatan School in Boyce, Va. and worked in private industry as a CPA, controller, and accountant. She is also licensed as a CPA in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
M.S., Management Non-Profit Leadership, New England College
Mr. Monahan plans and administers all aspects of the college counseling process at SAS beginning with academic planning in the ninth grade and continuing with guidance through senior year and the college admission process. He is also the standardized testing coordinator, head wrestling coach, and assistant track coach. In 2020, Mr. Monahan also assumed the critical role of campus COVID coordinator.
Mr. Monahan is a member of the Board of Directors for the Southern Association for College Admission Counseling and serves as a National Delegate to the National Association for College Admission Counseling. He is an active member of the National Association for College Admission Counseling and the International University Alliance High School Counselor Advisory Board. Prior to relocating to the South, Mr. Monahan was an active member of the New England Association for College Admission Counseling. He was selected as a Professional of the Year by the organization in 2016-2017. Mr. Monahan has presented at regional, national, and international conferences on college counseling and admission topics ranging from management, NCAA recruitment, marketing, partnerships, and more.
Mr. Monahan previously served as the Director of College Counseling at Cheshire Academy and in senior leadership roles in admission and enrollment management at Stonehill College and Daniel Webster College. He holds a B.A. in History from College of the Holy Cross, where he played Division 1-AA football, and a M.S. in Management Non-Profit Leadership from New England College. He and his wife Christine, an SAS history teacher and the school’s Residential Life Coordinator, live on the SAS campus with their two sons.
M.S., Sport Studies, Miami University
Derek Perkins was formerly Director of Admission at Darlington School in Roma, Ga. and Associate Director of Admission at Culver Academies in Culver, Ind. where he also coached ice hockey. Prior to that, he was Director of Enrollment Systems, Admissions Counselor, and Assistant Director of Admissions at Marian University in Indianapolis.
M.Div., Duke Divinity School
D.A.S., The School of Theology, The University of the South
In addition to her role as Chaplain, Mother Short teaches Introduction to Religious Studies. She was formerly Lead House Parent in Warner House and served as SAS's liaison to regional Episcopal churches. She and her family live on campus.
Geoffrey Smith, who holds the Fort Chair in Writing at SAS, joined the SAS faculty as a history teacher in 2014. In the intervening five years, he has instituted a multi-day Martin Luther King, Jr. celebration at the school, advised the school’s Debate Club and Christian Athletes’ Club, and led a Bible Study group. He coached the school’s Ethics Bowl team to back-to-back state championships in 2019 and 2020. His Winterim course, Art of Manliness: Skills Every Young Person Should Know, is a perennial favorite with students. He is also a lead house parent, assistant coach of the boys’ varsity soccer team, and leader of the ninth-grade Grade Level Program team. Smith has introduced several electives to the curriculum, including a Special Studies course that teaches students research skills and guides them through independent, cross-disciplinary research projects. Last year, he was elected by his fellow faculty members to be their representative to the school’s Board of Trustees. Smith received one of six 2016 Outstanding Educators Awards from Humanities Tennessee and the 2016 Belz-Lipman Holocaust Educator Award sponsored by the Tennessee Holocaust Commission. A model of lifelong learning, Smith spends his summers honing his teaching skills and expanding his breadth of knowledge. Among other projects, his summer professional development activity has included researching the life and work of Pulitzer Prize winner James Agee, a distinguished alumnus of St. Andrew's-Sewanee School, examining themes of religion, education, childhood, labor, and the transition to adulthood. Smith formerly taught at the All Saints' Academy in Winter Haven, Florida where he was chair of the History Department. He is a graduate of the University of the South.
M.S. Sports Administration, Georgia State University