Commons announces Head of Upper School

Sammi Handler

Effective July 1, Laura D. Ross will become the new Head of Upper School, leaving her position as Head of Upper School at the Greenhill School in Dallas, President Rick Commons announced in an email to students, parents and faculty Oct. 26.
“Mrs. Ross stood apart for her inspiring educational vision, broad experience in secondary and higher education and notable ability to engage faculty, staff, students and parents in meaningful dialogue,” Commons said in the email.
Ross first came to Greenhill in 2012 where she was “lauded for her impact on the climate and culture of the school,” Commons said. Head of Greenhill School Scott Griggs accredits Ross with improving the student-school relationship.
Griggs also said that Ross led Greenhill’s plan to start school at 9 a.m.
“Laura’s intentional focus on the well-being of our students and faculty has helped to create a climate in the Upper School that is extraordinarily productive, but also fun,” Griggs said in a Greenhill administrative announcement.
Ross said she was drawn to Harvard-Westlake because of the opportunity to “be part of one of the best schools in the country that also feels like a great fit for me and my family.”
“I don’t know yet if there’s anything I’d like to change at Harvard-Westlake as I don’t believe it’s possible to really know a school until being there for a while,” Ross said. “I plan to spend the next year listening to as many people as I can and hearing their perspectives on the school.”
Before Greenhill, Ross was the Director of College Counseling at Stephen’s Episcopal School in Austin. Additionally, she has also served as the Senior Associate Director of Undergraduate Admission and Director of Transfer Admission at Columbia University and “served as a primary reader for the many applications each year from Harvard-Westlake,” Commons said.
Ross grew up in Santa Barbara and graduated from Wesleyan University. She also received a Master’s in Education from Stanford University.
“After all my visits and conversations, I feel like Harvard-Westlake is a place I can belong,” Ross said.