By Julie Huss
---- — DERRY — Pinkerton Academy is getting closer to finding a new leader.
Two finalists for the Pinkerton headmaster job visited the Derry high school last week, greeting administration and faculty, and sitting in on classes.
The finalists are Christine Heine and Griffin Morse. Both were scheduled for two-day visits.
Heine is the assistant Head of School and Head of Upper School at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy in Philadelphia.
Morse is head of School Year Abroad in Spain. The school’s parent organization is headquartered in Boston and operates schools in Italy, France and China.
He speaks three languages and is also a long-time teacher.
While visiting Pinkerton, Morse and Heine had opportunities to see the campus in action, observe classrooms, and meet with local superintendents of Pinkerton’s sending schools.
Both candidates would be good for the top job, according to search committee members.
“It’s been a lot of hard work, but it’s nice to see the results,” said Pinkerton trustee and search committee member Kimberly Smith.
She said both Morse and Heine would bring extensive experience and knowledge to lead Pinkerton after Headmaster Mary Anderson retires this year.
Smith said the final two were chosen from a field of 15 candidates. The search committee was helped by the firm Carney, Sandoe and Associates.
Smith accompanied both candidates last week during the campus tours.
Pinkerton has only had three official headmasters in its history, Ivah Hackler, Bradford Ek and Anderson. Most had long careers.
Anderson has worked at Pinkerton for 38 years, first serving as a teacher, then leading the school’s business department. She then become assistant headmaster before landing the top job.
Smith said there is no firm timeline for making the final choice, but whoever is chosen will assume duties this summer.
She said it was an honor to be part of the headmaster selection process and this was one of the most important things she will do as a trustee of the high school.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” she said. “And both candidates are incredibly positive and excited about Pinkerton.”