Head of School Jon Brougham recently announced his decision to retire from The Hun School at the end of the 2022-2023 academic year after 37 years in education and 14 at the helm of The Hun School of Princeton. The beloved leader, known for his self-effacing manner and his transformational impact on the School, celebrated Hun’s culture and spirit of innovation in a series of announcements this week.
“Like many of you, I felt something special about Hun in my very first visit to campus almost thirteen years ago – its kindness, its joyfulness, and its unique combination of winning modesty and impressive achievement. Those qualities continue to inspire me every day, just as they have inspired countless others in the past 108 years. They are in Hun’s DNA, and I am sure they will continue to animate our campus many generations from now,” said Mr. Brougham.
Mr. Brougham shared that he initially intended for his time at Hun to be no more than ten years, but his passion for the School along with a series of projects he wanted to see through completion, kept him engaged.
Referencing some of those projects, Board Chair Steve Wills, CFO and COO of Palatin Technologies and parent of three Hun graduates, credits Mr. Brougham and team with having a transformational impact on the school.
“Under Mr. Brougham’s leadership, we built the Wilf Family Global Commons and reconstructed the Hun Middle School, Breen Performing Arts Center, and DAYLO STEM Center,” said Mr. Wills. “We embraced a student-centered classroom, launched a Global Immersion Program, the John Gale Hun Civics Program, and NextTerm. We saw demand for admission soar and our endowment more than doubled. In the last two years alone, we weathered the unique challenges of a global pandemic and expanded our understanding and expectations of ourselves with regard to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.
“He and his team have pushed our School to the forefront of innovative and humanistic teaching.”
Faculty and staff celebrated Mr. Brougham’s accomplishments with heartfelt, extended applause on Tuesday. The exuberant reaction was explained by Patricia Garrison, chair of the school’s interdisciplinary department.
“I have been so grateful for Jon's leadership these past years. It seems to me that the same characteristics that make him such a fine man -- genuine kindness, understanding, intelligence, and compassion, along with a great sense of humor -- have also made him an exceptional head of school. Over the years, Jon has created and nurtured the kind of vibrant and joyful school community of which I have been and will continue to be so very proud to be a part.”
History and Global Studies teacher Rory Hart agreed, extolling Mr. Brougham’s leadership style.
“Jon has been one of the best school leaders that I have had the pleasure to work with. He listens intently and considers others’ thoughts and concerns before he responds or arrives at a decision. He deftly encourages colleagues to harness their talents and ambitions in the service of Hun. Through these subtle yet powerful character strengths, Jon has empowered Hun faculty and staff members to contribute their best ideas and efforts to the School.”
Mr. Wills and Trustee Christiana Foglio will co-chair a search committee for Hun’s next head of school. The Board has retained the services of RG175 to assist with the search and transition. Mr. Brougham will continue to lead the school through the 2022-2023 academic year.