Island School names new leader

PUHI —The Board of Directors at Island School has appointed Shannon Graves to the position of Head of School, effective July 1.

A teacher, coach and independent school administrator for the past 20 years, Graves is currently the assistant head of school and upper school head at Admiral Farragut Academy in St. Petersburg, Florida, which serves 400 students in pre-kindergarten through grade 12.

“I am both honored and humbled to accept Island School’s invitation to become the next head of school,” Graves said. “From the first conversation that I shared with the search committee to my recent visit to the campus, I knew that Island School was a special place, steeped in a tradition of excellence in education.”

A 10-member committee conducted an eight-month national search and interview process, selecting Graves from 71 applicants from 22 states and eight countries. The process included multiple opportunities for input from the community.

Graves comes from a family of educators.

His father was a long-time school superintendent and his mother taught at the high school level for 25 years. He began his career in education in 1994 as an English teacher and basketball coach in New Richmond, Ohio.

In 2004, he moved to the Big Island, where he served as the dean of boarding and student life at Hawaii Preparatory Academy, moving quickly to principal of the lower and middle schools. Graves and his family moved to Florida in 2006 where he joined Admiral Farragut Academy in St. Petersburg as the assistant headmaster and head of upper school.

Graves received his bachelor of arts degree in communications and journalism from Morehead State University in Morehead, Kentucky, in 1992. He received his master’s degree in Educational Administration from Xavier University in Cincinnati in 1998.

Shannon said he was drawn to Island School because of its commitment to college-preparatory education on Kauai, its diverse student body and its dedicated school community of faculty, staff, parents, alumni, board members and volunteers.

“My family and I look forward and are excited to be a part of Island School and the community,” he said.

Board of Directors’ President Kathy Richardson said she was pleased to have Graves join Island School.

“His strong educational background in Hawaii and Florida will enhance and strengthen Island School’s academic programs to provide our students with a top notch education,” she said.

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