Celso Cárdenas will replace Dean Tamar Adegbile next year, Head of Upper School Audrius Barzdukas said in an email to parents today.
Cárdenas was previously the Associate Director of College Counseling at Francis W. Parker School in Chicago. He will take over as dean for Adegbile’s current sophomores and juniors as well as next year’s incoming sophomores.
“Every transition is bittersweet, and while we are sad to lose an iconic dean and beloved faculty member in Ms. Adegbile, we feel incredibly fortunate and excited about Mr. Cárdenas bringing his talent, experience and wisdom to Harvard-Westlake,” Barzdukas said in the email.
At Francis W. Parker, Cárdenas worked with standardized college testing, and visited various universities throughout the nation and schools in Canada and Ireland. He was the first of his family to go to college, graduating from the University of Michigan. He also received a master’s degree in community counseling from Northeastern Illinois University and has experience providing mental health counseling.
“We looked across the United States for a new dean and believe that we have found the best one in Mr. Cárdenas,” Barzdukas said. “His unique blend of skills and experience in counseling young people, college admissions and higher education is ideal for serving as your dean.”
Cárdenas is fluent in Spanish, has published a short story “Brotherhood: Gay Life in College Fraternities” and filmed an independent movie.
Students will have the opportunity to meet Cárdenas at a reception May 21 in the Feldman-Horn Gallery from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.