“There isn’t a school leader anywhere who couldn’t benefit from the analytic skills and wisdom of Rick Melvoin and Vance Wilson.”
– Dr. Michael Thompson
“I could not imagine two more distinguished and accomplished independent school leaders. Both Vance Wilson and Rick Melvoin demonstrated their tremendous leadership skills, their keen strategic thinking, and their deep-seated values through their combined 44 years of service at Heads of two of the nation’s top schools – St. Albans and Belmont Hill – respectively leading each institution through a period of unprecedented success. Having gotten to know both men, I can confidently state that any school leader, board, or administrative team would benefit from their wisdom, guidance, and counsel.”Robert Musselwhite, Board Chair of St. Albans School, 2018-2020
“Vance Wilson and Rick Melvoin are both exceptional educators and leaders. They have had long tenures at two of the best independent schools in the country and have held numerous leadership positions in national – and even international – educational associations. Even as they ran the day to day life at their respective schools, they served as mentors to both new and seasoned Heads of School. They are known for their kindness, wisdom and honesty. Any school leader would benefit from their wise counsel.“Marjo Talbott, head of Maret School in Washington and President of both of The Headmasters Association and the Country Day School Heads Association
“The team of Rick Melvoin and Vance Wilson represent a wealth of experience and insight in successful leadership of complex educational communities on a variety of levels–academic, intellectual, operational, governance, emotional, spiritual, athletic and cultural. These two individuals that over the years have demonstrated a deep commitment to developing sophisticated and balanced educational programs that encourage the emotional, character and intellectual development of students. As two past presidents of the International Boys’ Schools’ Coalition their experiences and contacts are extensive global and nuanced. Their experience in the development of boys is unparalleled. The duo provide a versatility in organizational leadership styles and approaches that is ideal for school leaders charged with the responsibility of building a culture of teamwork and cohesion. As a colleague and “unofficial” client over the past twenty years, I cannot image a better team to guide and mentor the leadership team—board and management—of a school community during these challenging times.”David Armstrong, former head of Landon School and the Executive Director of the International Boys’ School Coalition
“In my work as a consultant, I have known and worked with hundreds of heads of independent schools. Vance Wilson and Rick Melvoin have been among the very best school leaders I have ever met. They have vast experience in successfully running two complex, powerful schools. Important as experience is, that is not the only strength that they bring to the table. They are both sage, thoughtful, calm men who understand the moral dimensions of leadership, and who have the ability to combine strategic thinking with a deeply felt sense of mission. There isn’t a school leader anywhere who couldn’t benefit from the analytic skills and wisdom of Rick Melvoin and Vance Wilson.”Dr. Michael Thompson, Bestselling Author & International Speaker
“I have worked closely with both Rick and Vance, and have always appreciated their deep understanding of school culture and the ways that heads must maintain a school’s traditions while also addressing complex contemporary concerns. They are outstanding mentors and I have relied on them for wisdom about my own role as a head and also about best practices for working with a board of trustees, leading a faculty, and managing the financial challenges of my school. And they always make me laugh, which is no small thing sometimes!“Sarah Pelmas, Head of School and O’Donnell Family Chair, Winsor School
Our Consulting Services
Mentoring the Head of School
What we offer in the realm of mentoring (sometimes referred to as coaching) is experience, expertise and perspective.
Mentoring a Leadership Group
Our work is confidential to the school head and the group itself, with the goal to create and sustain excellence in group leadership.
School Mission & Market
How do you tell your school’s story? If the mission is clear and the vision is strong, great things can happen for a school.
We can help a school work its way through both general questions of good governance & the challenges of more immediate issues.
Board Strategic Thinking
We take a long view, but we are ever mindful of the real challenges of keeping a school healthy and viable for today and tomorrow.
A retreat should aim for a renewed sense of colleagueship, a volunteer engagement that survives the more routine board meetings of the year.
Some programs create outcomes we don’t intend, or that we can’t see all aspects of our program because we are too familiar with it.