by Sam Settin Torres '08, Associate in the Development and Alumnae Relations Department
Welcome all to the installation of our new Head of School, Stephanie Luebbers. As you see in your program, my name is Sam, and I am a graduate of the class of 2008, as well as a member of the Stoneleigh-Burnham staff. I’m honored to stand before you, selected by my peers to speak today on their behalf to welcome this new member of our community.
Stoneleigh-Burnham has a long history of inclusion in the individuals we employ, as well as the individuals whom we admit as students. We’re not the type of school that requires presidential pedigree and breeding to attend, or to work here. We have never been this way, and I believe that is what makes us who we are. Our students have been the daughters of farmers, tradespeople, homemakers, librarians, business owners, lawyers, service workers, and doctors alike, and in my case the daughter of an electrician, and these past students have gone on to pursue careers both similar, and unlike that of their families. Our staff have reflected much of the same, coming from families of educators, tradespeople, nurses, homemakers, and public servants.
What all of these people have in common, is that they are regular, honest people. Hard-working people, who all contribute to make Stoneleigh-Burnham extraordinary. The truth is, Stoneleigh-Burnham is exceptional because of its people. And I know that Stoneleigh-Burnham will continue to be made exceptional by the addition of people like Stephanie, an educator, and the daughter of an eye surgeon and a surgical nurse. Someone who comes from a family of honest, hard-working, regular people, someone just like the rest of us. Someone who fits right in to the rich fabric that makes Stoneleigh-Burnham what it is today.
I say all of this because for so many of us; students, faculty, and staff alike, this place becomes more than just a school, and more than just a job. Stoneleigh-Burnham becomes a home, and a family. In the short time that I have come to know you, Stephanie, you have had the keen sense to see this in Stoneleigh-Burnham, and it’s what I’ve already heard you describe as the “magic” here. You’ve said yourself, that the “magic” is what attracted you to this position. All of these things are what help me to know, without questions, that you are the right person to take on the leadership of this school. Because for all of us who are here today, we were drawn to this place by some force beyond our own control. We needed a job, we sought quality education, we’d heard good things about what that girls school in town was doing, and we all stay because of the magic. We stay because this has become home, and these people have become our family. You are now and forevermore, a part of that family, Stephanie, a part of that magic, and on behalf of the Stoneleigh-Burnham staff, I’d like to welcome you home. Thank you.